BOWLING GREEN, Ky. — As part of their Healthy on the Hill initiative, Western Kentucky University now offers a COVID-19 dashboard which gives a weekly update on positive coronavirus cases. The university has worked with the Graves Gilbert Clinic at WKU along with Med Center Health to collect the data. 

What You Need To Know

  • WKU offers COVID-19 dashboard with weekly update on coronavirus

  • University partnered with Graves Gilbert Clinic, Med Center Health

  • 462 virtual tests performed for students, faculty, staff since July 1

  • Dashboard will be updated weekly

The running total of virtual tests performed for WKU students, faculty, and staff is 462 since July 1, with 132 tests conducted between Aug. 7 and 13. The campus reported 206 positive cases since July 1 with 19 reported from Aug. 7 to Aug. 13. Of those 19 cases, 14 were students and five were faculty, staff, or on-campus contractors.

Director of Media Relations Bob Skipper says the numbers are a combination of people that have related themselves to WKU, both on and off-campus. 

“These are numbers from students that may have just returned to campus or they may be students out in the community who haven’t returned to campus yet but because they’ve identified as being WKU students, they’re counted in that number,” said Skipper. 

The campus has worked closely with the Barren River Health Department to create a comprehensive reopening plan. The health department conducts a contact investigation, asking if a person is associated with the university. Once a positive case has been identified, regional epidemiologist Layne Blackwell says they will try to begin an investigation within 24 hours for students, faculty, and staff. 

“We have a few point of contacts at the health department so that our communication can happen relatively quickly and then when cases are identified the contract tracing and case investigation relatively quickly so they don’t get lost with all of the other people or positive cases coming in,” said Blackwell. 

The university will work closely with the health department to ensure there aren't any gatherings of large groups. Skipper says the key to keeping cases low is making sure everyone is following the three pillars of safety.

“Wear a mask, wash your hands and keep that physical distance of six feet apart. If we all do our part then we can learn to live beside this virus until a vaccine is developed and until we get this under control,” said Skipper. 

Classes will begin Aug. 24, offering both online and in-person classes. The dashboard will be updated weekly.