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University's COVID-19 dashboard expanded to include additional data

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The University of Louisiana at Lafayette has expanded its public COVID-19 dashboard.

The dashboard displays the number of UL Lafayette students, faculty and staff members who have tested positive for the virus.

When it launched in early September, the dashboard included confirmed, documented cases among students tested on campus, either at Student Health Services or in the Department of Athletics. Student workers who provided documentation to the Office of Human Resources were included in the overall total as well. 

The expanded dashboard now shows those cases alongside the number of students who have been tested off campus and have self-reported their positive results to the Office of the Dean of Students.

Dr. Jaimie Hebert is provost and vice president for Academic Affairs. He co-chairs the task force that planned the safe resumption of on-campus instruction, activities and residential life this fall.

He said including additional data on the dashboard “reflects the University’s commitment to transparency and accuracy” in reporting positive COVID cases. The dashboard also includes totals derived from employee documentation received by Human Resources.

“By adhering to the University’s health and safety protocols and by following general public health guidance, the campus community has kept the number of positive cases low. The care our students and employees have for their own wellbeing and for that of their colleagues and friends is gratifying – and not at all surprising,” Hebert said.

The dashboard can be accessed here. It is updated by 5 p.m. daily to reflect the previous day’s cases. Those reported between Friday and Sunday are posted the following Monday.

“Releasing these numbers daily – and doing so in an accurate and public way – is another step we’ve taken to keep our community informed and safe,” Hebert said.

The dashboard displays a weekly case number as well as a running total that reflects cases reported since March 16. It also enables users to scan weekly totals starting in mid-March.

Hebert cautioned that frequent visitors to the dashboard will note an initial jump in cases now that additional student data has been posted.

“We discussed including this data initially but realized the self-reported cases might be duplicated in data we had from Student Health Services, Athletics and Human Resources. It took time to cull through the two data sets, both of which cover a seven-month period, to ensure we’re presenting an accurate picture to the campus and to the general public.”