320 Wits University medical students cleared of Covid-19

More than 300 medical students from Wits, who were encouraged to go into self-quarantine after a fellow student tested positive for Covid-19, have been cleared.
More than 300 medical students from Wits, who were encouraged to go into self-quarantine after a fellow student tested positive for Covid-19, have been cleared.
Image: 123RF/SAMSONOVS

320 Wits University students have been cleared of Covid-19 after being tested.

They were part of a group of 350 students who came into contact with a student who tested positive for Covid-19.

However thirty medical students remain in self-quarantine, 25 of them at home and five in the institution's residences.

“The students are, however, constantly being monitored for Covid-19 symptoms and none have displayed these so far. These students are receiving support from the university,” said Wits spokesperson Buhle Zuma.

Zuma said after meetings with the National Institute for Communicable Diseases (NICD) and government departments, the university was identified as low-risk.

On Monday, the institution decided to close early for the Easter break, asking students to leave the campus and residences within 72 hours. 

“We are deeply cognisant that students may have some concerns and challenges around this decision, but we believe that we are acting in the best interests of students and the broader public. Minimising exposure in the institution extends beyond face to face contact within the academic programme, but also in our residences, especially at this relatively early stage of the pandemic,” said Zuma.

Meanwhile, two law students launched an urgent court application on Tuesday, in which they sought to interdict the university from evacuating students from residences. 

Lerato Moela said the institution was being reckless because 350 students  were exposed to one student who tested positive.

Moela said the university was indirectly avoiding responsibility in the potential spread of the disease. 

On Wednesday, the number of Covid-19 cases stood at 116.


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