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Texas A&M reports more than 400 cases of COVID-19 this month

The coronavirus positivity rate at the College Station campus last week was 16.89%.

COLLEGE STATION, Texas — Editor's note: The attached video about random testing at A&M originally aired on Aug. 21. 

Hundreds of Aggies at Texas A&M University have tested positive for COVID-19, the university has reported.

From Aug. 2 to Aug. 22, 407 cases of coronavirus were self-reported.

The number of cases jumped from 17 the week of Aug. 2 to 358 the week of Aug. 16 as more students returned. This week’s numbers aren’t available yet.

The most recent positivity rate reported last week was 16.89%.

TAMU is being transparent by reporting cases in a COVID-19 dashboard launched on its website this week. It is updated weekly.

A&M Provost and Executive Vice President Carol Fierke also addressed the issue in a university-wide email, according to The Battalion.

“As students have returned, we are seeing an increase in COVID-19 diagnoses in this population and in the community,” Fierke said. “Texas A&M understands the importance of COVID-19 testing and the critical nature of sharing data with the Aggieland community.”

Along with self-reporting by students and staff, TAMU is randomly testing students chosen in the COVID-19 Random Testing Program. It’s designed to help them track the virus.

“It will also help to identify transmission hot spots and clusters of infections, using real-time analytic strategies and rapid campus communications that will help protect you and your fellow students,” TAMU said on its website.

Two sororities, Kappa Kappa Gamma and Delta Delta Delta were quarantined earlier this month after reporting outbreaks.

TAMU requires face masks on campus and at off-campus activities they sponsor. They’re also required at activities involving organizations recognized by TAMU.

Gatherings, where social distancing isn’t possible, are limited to 10 people.