Today, KFL&A Public Health declared an outbreak at Watts Hall, which is a Queen’s University Residence. This comes as Kingston noted a spike new COVID-19 cases today. To date, there are 5 active cases in the residence. The university is also reporting 6 active cases off-campus.
Students in residence were alerted to the outbreak via email on Thursday. “We are informing you in accordance with Residence protocols of positive cases of COVID19 identified in Watts Hall,” Residence Life and Services wrote. “All students from the 3rd floor of Watts have been identified as high-risk contacts and as a result are moving into Smith isolation,” they added.
Additionally, students were told that KFL&A Public Health will be on-site at Watts Hall to conduct voluntary testing for all residents. “Your health and safety is our priority and we are in regular contact with KFLAPH as we manage this situation and KFLAPH continue their contact tracing efforts,” said Residence Life .
The Residences Team continues to assure students that Residence Facilities will clean shared spaces and high touch points frequently. They will also be implementing a self-isolation protocol which was established late last year. “As you know, we have detailed processes and protocols including the ability to manage case contact in residence with Kingston Public Health, the ability to safely isolate and support people who have symptoms or have been in contact with a confirmed positive case, as well as heightened safety and cleaning practices.” said Queen’s Residences.
Queen’s University residences urges students to self monitor for COVID-19 symptoms. “Please continue to self-monitor for COVID-19 symptoms including fever, difficulty breathing, loss of smell or taste, and other symptoms as outlined here. If symptoms develop, you must report them immediately (via the Victoria Hall front desk at 613-533-2531), get tested and enter self-isolation while awaiting your test results,” said Queen’s University Residences.
While there is currently no evidence that the outbreak stemmed from a large gathering, the Queen’s Athletics and Recreation department has closed all fields and running tracks for the time being. “For your safety, please stay off all fields and running tracks until Athletics & Recreation reopens them,” the statement said.