Public Health

MCHD announces 20 new cases, cluster at Wabash College

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The Montgomery County Health Department announced Wednesday 20 additional confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Montgomery County, 14 of which are students of Wabash College. Four cases are staff of Bickford Senior Living. This brings the county’s total cumulative cases to 446. There have been 21 overall cumulative fatalities connected to the coronavirus disease.

An increase in positive cases in Montgomery County is not surprising as positive cases among Wabash College students, once back on campus, are reflected as part of the county’s data on the Indiana State Department of Health dashboard.

Wabash College has been innovative and adaptive in their approach to address COVID-19 this academic school year. In addition to common mitigation strategies (social distancing, wearing masks, washing hands/hygiene, etc.), a surveillance program at the college has been successful in identifying students with COVID-19. The program includes random testing and an app used to monitor symptoms of students and staff. Students who test positive for COVID-19 are isolated and cared for by staff on campus. Close contacts identified through contact tracing are sent home in most cases to quarantine.

Like the recent cluster identified at Bickford Senior Living, the positive cases of students at Wabash College are related to communal living clusters, such as dormitories and fraternities, which is common on college campuses. Most colleges and universities are dealing with similar challenges among their student body.

Demographics related to cases are available on the Indiana State Department of Health’s online dashboard at www.in.gov/corona
virus. Local demographics can be found by clicking on Montgomery County on the state map.

Updates and other information can be found on the Montgomery County Health Department website and social media channels. Other information is available on the Center for Disease Control and Prevention website (www.coronavirus.gov) or the Indiana State Department of Health website (www.in.gov/coronavirus).

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