Durham, N.C. — North Carolina Central University has identified a cluster of COVID-19 cases on campus. The cluster was in Baynes Residence Hall involving student athletes who are part of the football team, officials at the school said late Thursday night.

The cluster comes as students went back to in-person classes on Monday.

Officials said all students who tested positive have been isolated. Contact tracing was also being conducted. The university has reported the cluster to the Durham County Health Department and is awaiting verification.

A “cluster” is defined by the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services as a minimum of five cases with illness onsets or initial positive results within a 14-day period and plausible epidemiological linkage between cases.

Additionally, as part of the university’s surveillance program, NCCU will continue to test all students who live in residence halls.

The individuals in this cluster are working closely with Apex Solutions, the university’s third-party vendor for testing, tracing and consultation. Contact tracing has been initiated with direct communication to anyone determined to have been in close contact with a positive individual. Those identified as a close contact will be notified directly and provided with further guidance.

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