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University of Wyoming quarantines 47 students after outbreak

CASPER, Wyo. (AP) — Coronavirus infections from off-campus gatherings at the University of Wyoming have led the school to quarantine nearly 50 students.

Seven students have confirmed cases of the coronavirus as a result of those gatherings, while 47 are being quarantined, officials said.

If five or more students and employees test positive for the virus in a single day, the university will pause its phased return to in-person instruction, the Casper Star-Tribune reported. Three positive tests were reported Tuesday while four were reported on Monday.

The university began classes on Aug. 24 exclusively online. Some on-campus learning started Monday. The school hopes to have full in-person instruction by Sept. 28.

The university did not specify the types of gatherings that led to the infections.

There are currently 28 active confirmed cases of the coronavirus from those affiliated with the university, with an additional eight students and one employee exhibiting symptoms and awaiting test results. In total, 78 people have tested positive at the university since the beginning of the pandemic.

The number of infections is thought to be far higher because many people have not been tested, and studies suggest people can be infected with the virus without feeling sick.

The students involved could face punishment from the university. Those who hosted or attended the gatherings will be put on interim suspension. All involved students will be referred to the Dean of Students Office for investigation.

For most people, the new coronavirus causes mild or moderate symptoms, such as fever and cough that clear up in two to three weeks. For some — especially older adults and people with existing health problems — it can cause more severe illness, including pneumonia, and death.

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