ITHACA, N.Y. — President Martha Pollack acknowledged two cases of COVID-19 are from the Cornell campus community in a note to students, faculty and staff on Friday.
Tompkins County Health Department released updated numbers on Friday showing cases had nearly doubled, from 6 to 11, overnight.
“Earlier today, we were notified that the Tompkins County Health Department (TCHD) confirmed the first two cases of COVID-19 within the Ithaca campus community of faculty, staff and students,” said Pollack. “Cornell is working with TCHD to support the health and safety of the individuals (who have been in isolation and receiving ongoing care) and of the broader community. TCHD, upon confirmation of the positive cases, conducted immediate contact tracing and identified and communicated with close contacts of the positive cases.”
This is the first case to be confirmed as part of the Cornell community. The first two cases in Tompkins were identified in the Ithaca College community.
“I appreciate that this news is difficult, though it is not entirely unexpected given the rise in confirmed cases nationally and globally and the recent news of the first confirmed cases in the county,” added Pollack. “But as I have mentioned in my prior messages, public health experts are clear that the best way that we can mitigate the spread of COVID-19 is through social distancing — minimizing the number of interactions that provide the opportunity for the disease to spread.”
President Pollack goes on to say that Cornell community members will be kept up to date should new cases be confirmed and that the county will continue to conduct contact investigations and contact people that may have come in contact with someone that tested positive, should they need to.
Students, faculty and staff are also directed to the Cornell COVID-19 resource page.