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COVID outbreak declared at Laurier residence (update)

Three cases have been confirmed in Clara Conrad Hall
Wilfrid Laurier University
File photo of Wilfrid Laurier University (Waterloo campus). Blair Adams/KitchenerToday

The health department in Waterloo Region has declared a COVID-19 outbreak in two floors of the Clara Conrad Hall residence, located on Wilfrid Laurier University's Waterloo campus.

It was confirmed Sunday evening, that four more students tested positive for the virus.

Three live in Clara Conrad Hall, while the other resides at Waterloo College Hall residence.

Another three live off-campus in their own housing.

All are now self-isolating, and Public Health said all the cases are linked to off-campus study groups.

"All seven likely acquired their infection participating in one of multiple study groups held off-campus," said Medical Officer of Health Dr. Hsiu-Li Wang. "There has been spread in these in-person study groups, and I really don't recommend people don't gather if they don't have to. The safest way to study together is to study virtually."

Public Health has directed that all residents of the designated two floors in Clara Conrad Hall with positive cases will need to isolate for the next two weeks. Those students will be moved to a specialized quarantine residence for that purpose, with the school supporting their needs such as food.

“The health and well being of our students and the Kitchener-Waterloo community are our primary concern,” Ivan Joseph, Laurier’s Vice-President: Student Affairs said in a release. “We will continue to work closely with public health officials to manage this outbreak and to do everything we can to prevent the further spread of the virus.”

Anyone else identified as being a high-risk close contact with the individuals will be notified by public health officials directly.

Dr. Wang also noted that the number of high-risk contacts is fluid at this time, as investigators are still working on figuring out where those infected have been.


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