Classes to resume at Ursinus College Monday

- Classes will resume on a regular schedule at Ursinus College on Monday.

This comes after the Montgomery County Health Department began an investigation of an outbreak of gastro-intestinal illness associated with students from the college.

As a precaution, the school canceled classes and shut down dining halls for the remainder of Thursday, as well as all of Friday.

Now, officials from Ursinus state that reports of symptoms related to the stomach illness decreased significantly since Friday.

Over the weekend, there have been upwards of 10 new reports, bringing the total number of student who reported symptoms since late Tuesday night to around 200.

Most students who suffered from symptoms reported that they symptoms subsided within 12-24 hours.

College officials continued in a statement:

“The college continues to work with health officials to determine the cause of the illness. It remains unknown whether the illness was food-borne or transmitted person to person. Health officials indicated that testing could take up to a week.

“Over the weekend, the college ensured that all public spaces and common areas on campus were cleaned, sanitized and disinfected, and hand sanitizer dispensers will continue to be installed at high traffic areas and building entrances over the next week.”

Early last week, Ursinus College said the students had reported symptoms such as vomiting and stomach pain by Wednesday afternoon and 22 of them had sought treatment at local hospitals or urgent care centers.

As of Friday afternoon, 192 students, staff, and faculty had exhibited symptoms of the stomach illness, and had contacted the college's wellness center.

The statement continued:

“Ursinus has been working very closely with the Montgomery County Department of Health since Wednesday morning. The department issued its second Inspection Report for Food Establishments Saturday, revealing that Ursinus College and its Wismer Hall dining facilities are in compliance with the county and had met the department’s recommendations. The college voluntarily closed Wismer Dining Hall on Wednesday before re-opening on Thursday for dinner, and since then has remained operational.

“This has been a difficult time for students and their families, and the college is committed to making students aware of all the medical care resources available to them. To that end, Jefferson University Hospital is offering Ursinus students free video visits with Jefferson doctors through Feb. 29. This offering, called JeffConnect On-Demand Virtual Care, allows students to have an urgent care video visit with a Jefferson emergency physician anytime, 24/7, using a mobile device or a computer with a webcam. The JeffConnect app is available at no cost to Ursinus students. In addition to this new offering, the college continues to make its Wellness Center available to students.”

According to the college’s statement, most events being held this week will go on as scheduled. Up-to-date information regarding campus events is available on the Ursinus website.

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