COVID-19 on campus: Concordia confirms 146 cases this week, 368 cases this semester
Quebec’s sixth wave of coronavirus infections has made its way to Concordia
On March 31, Concordia confirmed that it received 146 COVID-19 case reports from students and faculty members from March 22 to March 28. The university told The Link that it had received reports of 368 cases since the start of the Winter 2022 semester.
As the sixth wave of COVID-19 hits Quebec, Concordia has seen a major uptick in cases. Out of the 368 recorded cases this semester since Jan. 6, 11 weeks ago, approximately 40 per cent of Concordia’s cases have been reported solely in the past week. Quebec health experts agree the wave is still going strong, and that cases are likely to continue rising.
The 368 COVID-19 cases included 287 sick students, 49 staff members, 28 faculty members, and four contractors.
Included in this total were the 59 cases reported across Concordia’s residences this semester. All numbers provided by the university, however, only reflect those who self-reported their positive test results to the university.
To keep track of its cases, the university had made a COVID-19 dashboard on its website. This board, however, was removed before the start of the Winter 2022 semester.
“The dashboard was stopped in December after the government restricted PCR testing to only a few groups (health workers) and access to rapid testing was limited in the general population, making it hard for people to test and self-declare,” explained university spokesperson Vannina Maestracci..
“There is no standardized protocol that professors must follow if they cannot teach a class, and they determine how best to proceed given the requirements of their course,” she added.
Months after demands for hybrid courses by the Concordia Student Union, Concordia’s Teaching and Research Assistants union, faculty unions, and other student groups, the university continues to prioritize in-person learning. As cases continue increasing, the university says it has undertaken the necessary steps for safety.
“Despite a loosening of directives in the province, we have kept in place several measures such as mandatory mask-wearing, including when teaching and in shared spaces where a two-meter distance cannot be maintained,” said Maestracci.
Students who test positive are encouraged to fill out a COVID-19 Self-Declaration Form and follow Concordia’s safety guidelines. As the semester draws to an end, The Link will continue monitoring case numbers and safety measures on campus.