NIU reports 5 more cases of coronavirus Tuesday

Northern Illinois University reported five new cases of COVID-19 on Tuesday, all in students, bringing the total number of cases up to 633, though only 27 cases are currently active as of the start of the new semester in January.

New cases reported through Thursday of this week could also include those identified through the university’s gateway testing protocol, meaning all students prior to moving back to campus this month were required to get tested. Those found to have contracted the viral respiratory disease were quarantined, and a cumulative number of tests identified through this protocol will be reported Thursday.

No new recoveries were reported Tuesday, leaving the total at 606.

The school’s quarantine and isolation spaces use nearly doubled to 8.0% from 4.3% the day prior.

As in the fall, students were required to take a COVID-19 test before being allowed to move into university housing this spring. NIU will post the results in daily totals as they come in and will summarize all move-in results by Wednesday, according to the website.

After Thanksgiving break, NIU classes that weren’t already being offered online were transitioned to remote if they were able to do so, although some courses could remain in person, as the campus and residential halls still were open for students. No decision has been made yet on spring graduation ceremonies for the Class of 2021.

According to the school, a 14-day quarantine begins after individuals first show signs of COVID-19 symptoms, not when they receive a positive test for the virus. A case is considered recovered after the 14-day period is over.

Although specific surveillance testing results are reported weekly on Mondays, positive tests found through the program are included in daily statistics.

Daily COVID-19 case data from the DeKalb County Health Department may not reflect daily data from NIU because some students or employees may live outside the county and still test positive for the virus.

Kelsey Rettke

Kelsey Rettke is the editor of the Daily Chronicle, part of Shaw Media and DeKalb County's only daily newspaper devoted to local news, crime and courts, government, business, sports and community coverage. Kelsey also covers breaking news for Shaw Media Local News Network.