Appalachian State Updates its Coronavirus Website to Include Additional COVID-19 Testing Data

Published Friday, June 19, 2020 at 1:21 pm

On June 5, Chancellor Everts announced an update to the university’s coronavirus website to include a dashboard that gives increased visibility regarding COVID-19 test results, the number of positive COVID-19 cases, and information related to testing sites. This website and dashboard are the most accurate and immediate source for the latest information related to Appalachian’s response to COVID-19.

You can read her announcement here.

You can find the dashboard here.

The latest reported numbers include 6 students, 3 employees, and 40 contracted workers. None of the students or employees have been on campus in recent weeks. Public health staff has identified close contacts, who are in quarantine and who are being provided access to testing during their quarantine period.

As stay-at-home restrictions are lifted and students, faculty, and staff return to campus, we expect to see an increase in confirmed positive COVID-19 cases.

We also expect an increase in self-reported cases that have not been tested by AppHealthCare or App State. When we hear of these reports, we are coordinating with local public health agencies to the greatest extent possible, in consultation with the North Carolina Division of Public Health Communicable Disease team, to confirm positive cases.

Reporting positive cases:

Faculty and staff are required to report if they have tested positive for COVID-19. 

You can report this information in two ways:

If you have concerns about the health of a student, you may:

All reported information will remain confidential.

What happens when someone tests positive?

In North Carolina, when someone tests positive, their health care provider is required by law to report that to their local health department. They also report positive test cases to the state. This is to ensure health care is being provided to individuals who have tested positive, and the health of the public is being protected by implementing isolation procedures.

When an App State student, faculty or staff member tests positive, the local public health department makes contact with that person and gives public health guidance to isolate away from others, stay home and not go to work. AppHealthCare is responsible for public health in Watauga, Ashe and Alleghany Counties.

Additionally, local public health departments are responsible for contact tracing – no matter where someone received a test. This means AppHealthCare will work to:

  • Identify cases of COVID-19
  • Isolate those who have tested positive
  • Identify and quarantine close contacts of those who have tested positive for 14 days
  • Monitor positive cases and close contacts until released

When an App State Student has a positive test result, the university’s Student Health Service will assist AppHealthCare as needed.

Who will be notified?

In the event of a positive test, only close contacts of those who have tested positive will be notified by health care providers. This is to protect the privacy of the individuals and prevent the disclosure of protected health information. This procedure is also consistent with CDC and public health guidelines, as well as with the university’s communicable disease notification practice.

The university has a dedicated website about its response to COVID-19, where you can find a dashboard with case counts that is updated as positive cases related to the university are identified. App State will use this dashboard to keep the university community informed about verified, positive cases.

Additionally, AppHealthCare has developed a website dashboard with case counts for Watauga, Ashe and Alleghany counties.

Testing locations:

  • App State faculty and staff can be tested at any of the AppHealthCare clinic locations. No one will be turned away due to inability to pay. To schedule an appointment, call (828) 264-4995. Appalachian Regional Healthcare System and many primary care providers also offer testing. More information is available here.
  • Students who are concerned about symptoms should call Student Health Services at 828-262-3100 and ask to speak with a nurse.

COVID-19 testing requires pre-screening and an appointment. Please do not show up at a health care provider location without calling in advance.

The North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services offers two additional tools to help you determine whether you should be tested and find testing sites:

Reliable information:

It is important to rely on official sources of information for facts about COVID-19, not share unconfirmed information, and practice prevention measures like the 3 W’s: Wear a cloth face covering in public settings, Wash your hands frequently or use hand sanitizer, and Wait six feet from others. Additional preventative information may be found here.

App State and AppHealthCare will continue working together to monitor COVID-19 at the university and in our community and to keep the public informed.

Should you have questions, please do not hesitate to reach out to AppHealthCare at 828-264-4995 or App State Student Health Service at 828-262-3100 or [email protected].

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