COVID-19 cases reported at Northwestern University jumped to 81 this week from 16 the previous week as students returned from spring break.

The cases this week affected 65 undergraduate students, seven other students and nine staff members. No faculty were diagnosed with the disease during the week.

The school says that over the seven-day period ending Wednesday it conducted 9,845 tests for the disease, up from 8,364 in the previous period. The positive rate this week was 0.76% compared to 0.18% the week before.

NU says it has conducted a total of 198,474 tests since Aug 20.

The COVID cases reported by the university are included in the City of Evanston’s case counts if, and only if, the person involved lives in Evanston.

To look at the data another way, NU, with about 30,800 students, faculty and staff, had 26.3 cases per 10,000 population in the most recent period, compared to a rate of 5.2 the previous week.

Evanston during the same period had 114 cases among its 75,000 residents, or 15.2 cases per 10,000 population, compared to a rate of 6.49 the previous week.

Bill Smith is the editor and publisher of Evanston Now.

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