Second COVID-19 Case for Ithaca College Community

By President Shirley M. Collado, March 16, 2020
There remains no generalized risk to the wider Ithaca College community, according to health department officials.

Dear Campus Community,

I am writing to you once more with great sadness to inform you that another member of our campus community has tested positive for the coronavirus, COVID-19. The Tompkins County Health Department let us know this news today, and shared that this person has been at home in isolation since samples were collected for testing on March 11. Public health nurses are currently conducting a contact investigation to determine if there were any additional exposures.

It is important for you to know that the health department does not believe that this case and the initial coronavirus case we communicated with you about on Sunday, March 15, are related. Additionally, according to the health department, there remains no generalized risk to the wider Ithaca College community as a result of these two positive test results.

The Tompkins County Health Department serves as the county’s lead health agency,  in this capacity is responsible for COVID-19 case tracking and reporting. The department will reach out directly to any IC community members if health officials believe they need to be contacted, in order to evaluate whether any further steps, such as self-quarantine or testing, may be necessary for them.

I want to be clear that the health department will not make public any information regarding the identity of individuals who have tested positive, and the college aligns itself with this important practice. Our disclosure that the two individuals who have tested positive to date are members of our campus community is driven entirely by our commitment to be transparent with you around this public health crisis as it gains traction in Tompkins County.

Given the increasing spread of coronavirus nationally and in New York State, the likelihood grows with each day that more cases will be reported locally. Moving forward, we will not issue a message announcing each individual case among the Ithaca College community. We will continue to directly communicate with you regarding the operating status of the college, along with regularly updating our dedicated coronavirus website.

I know this is a challenging time, and I know many members of our community are very worried for themselves, for their loved ones, and for their friends and colleagues on this campus. Please continue to offer support and understanding to one another as we face this crisis as a strong, unified IC family.

In solidarity,

Shirley M. Collado