05/19/2022 - New COVID-19 cases reported to Caltech
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To: The Campus Community
From: Jennifer Howes, Assistant Vice President for Student Affairs and Wellness
Date: May 19, 2022
Re: New COVID-19 Case Reported to Caltech
In the past 24 hours, Student Wellness Services (SWS) has learned that 18 members of the Caltech community have tested positive for COVID-19. They include:
- Six graduate students, three of whom live in Caltech housing;
- Three undergraduate students, all of whom live in Caltech housing;
- And nine employees.
This brings the total number of reported COVID-19 cases among members of the Caltech campus community and off-campus facilities to 1,100 since March 2020.
The affected individuals are now isolating. In collaboration with the Pasadena Public Health Department (PPHD), SWS will identify and notify anyone in the Caltech community who may have had close contact with these individuals. Anyone found to be at risk of exposure will be provided specific instructions for quarantining and isolation. Currently, 14 students are isolating in spaces set aside in Caltech housing for individuals who have tested positive for COVID-19.
Amid the recent increase in COVID-19 cases on campus due to the arrival of the highly infectious BA.2 subvariant in Los Angeles County and a return to routine social activities, the Institute has reinstated its requirement that high-quality masks (surgical, N95s, KN95s, or KF95s) must be worn in all indoor locations on campus. In addition, Caltech is limiting large indoor social events on campus.
Do not come to campus if you are ill. Please review the isolation and quarantine procedures if you test positive or learn you are a close contact of someone through activities off campus.
The Institute's vaccination policies require that all employees and students who are eligible for a booster shot get boosted as soon as they are able to do so. In addition, all undergraduate students—regardless of vaccination status and living location—and graduate students living in Caltech housing or enrolled in in-person classes, as well as all individuals in the campus community who have an approved exemption to the Institute's vaccination requirement, are required to participate in the twice-weekly surveillance testing program, which is facilitated through an on-site laboratory located in the Chen Neuroscience Research Building.
All employees who are reporting on-site, including faculty members and instructors who are involved in in-person instruction, are strongly encouraged to enroll and participate in the surveillance testing program as well.
It is imperative that all members of our community remain diligent in adhering to all preventative measures and to county and city health orders that have been implemented to mitigate the spread of COVID-19.
The safety and well-being of Caltech's students, staff, and faculty is our top priority. All members of the Caltech community are expected to:
- Immediately notify SWS if you are ill, have had a positive test for COVID-19, or have been exposed to anyone with a positive test for COVID-19.
- Stay home if you are ill, have a fever, or have otherwise been instructed to quarantine or isolate.
- Participate in Caltech's surveillance testing program.
- Regularly wash your hands with soap and water for 20 seconds or use hand sanitizer with at least 60 percent alcohol.
More information about Caltech's response to the pandemic can be found on the Caltech Together coronavirus website. Reports of illness, testing metrics, and confirmed case counts can be found on a dedicated dashboard. Please note that JPL tracks COVID-19 cases separately and is not included in these data.