THERE’S NEWS OUT of NMU that a nursing professor tested positive for COVID last Thursday (eight days ago). This, the day after she had taken a group of nursing students to UPHS for orientation. In an earlier test, she had come up negative for COVID.
She apparently led these students on multiple floors of the hospital, talking to hospital staff, and they all eventually sat down together in the hospital cafeteria.
In addition, the professor had taught classes earlier in the week.
The day after that orientation trip to the hospital, she woke up with symptoms, she was tested immediately and was found to be positive.
Derek Hall, the chief marketing officer for NMU won’t confirm the news which comes from a reliable source–for privacy reasons, but he says the university has procedures in place to handle the situation.
“Contact tracing happens immediately, within a day,” he says. “The university health department and the county health department conduct the tracing, and we immediately contact those who were in close contact with the individual and those who were in proximity to that person.”
Today, (Friday), eight days after the professor’s positive test, things got more serious for her. She started experiencing severe breathing problems and was taken to UPHS where she is now hospitalized.
Her husband has also tested positive and is showing symptoms but not serious enough for hospitalization. Their three children, so far without symptoms, have been quarantined.
In the past, when contract racing was limited, it published alerts of locations where the exposure might have occurred–at the NMU golf course, for example, Temaki and Tea, and the NMU bookstore.
But so far in this case, from what we can tell, no locations have been alerted to possible exposure. Hall, while emphasizing that he won’t comment on any particular cases, emphasizes that contact tracing is done on all NMU cases.
The total of NMU positive cases so far–students, faculty and staff–has risen to 46, but only 10 are considered active cases. The others, according to Hall, have recovered or been resolved.
NMU’s numbers, by the way, remain below those of other, larger universities. Both Clemson University and East Carolina University both count more than 1000 cases each. At last count, University of Michigan, with 44,000 students, was at more than 300 positive cases, and Grand Valley State, with 23,000 students, counted 123.