Mass. reviewing virus testing at colleges and universities, Baker says

Mass. reviewing virus testing at colleges and universities, Baker says

BOSTON (AP) — Gov. Charlie Baker said Tuesday the state is currently reviewing all of the protocols associated with testing and contact tracing and isolation and quarantining at colleges and universities in Massachusetts following a coronavirus outbreak at Boston College last week.

Baker said the state had put in place what he described as a “very robust platform” for testing and contact tracing at the more than 100 colleges in the state.

With regular testing going on at the vast majority of those campuses, the state has seen a low rate of transmission, the Republican said at an afternoon press conference. He said the state plans to be in touch again with colleges.

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“Clearly we need to make sure we stay on top of this,” he said.

Boston College last week announced it was suspending activities for its men’s and women’s swimming and diving program after some team members tested positive for the coronavirus. A college spokesperson said the athletes who tested positive were in isolation.

Overall, the state continues to have one of the lowest positive test rates in the country, something Baker credited to residents adhering to key public health guidelines like wearing a mask in public and maintaining social distance.

“While they may seem annoying at times and pedantic, they are effective,” he said. “The people of Massachusetts have done an extraordinary job staying vigilante.”

Baker said there has been another benefit of the effort made to protect against the transmission of the coronavirus. He said health professionals have been seeing far fewer cases of traditional respiratory diseases like sore throat, strep throat and earaches.

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