Rapid-Trace Contract Tracing to Assist with COVID-19 Mitigation
On Monday, September 6, President Daniele C. Struppa issued an email to the campus community that said, “This past week’s increase in COVID-19 cases in our Chapman community is concerning for all of us. While many universities are reporting an expected rate of increase due to the return of face-to-face instruction, Chapman acted quickly and, by Friday, we saw a slowdown in the number of cases with our daily positivity rate falling to 3.9 percent, and our 7-day average at 5 percent as compared to Orange County’s 6.8 percent. We continue to implement solutions to the ebb and flow of the virus and invest the necessary resources to slow the spread of COVID-19 on our campuses.”
Also, Chapman has augmented and further enhanced the internal contract tracing staff with additional, external support. Effectively immediately, Rapid-Trace, a leader in contact tracing with specific expertise in working with higher education institutions, will begin working with Chapman under the supervision of Student Health Services. In the event a person within the Chapman community has a confirmed case of COVID-19, Rapid-Trace will identify and inform those who may have been exposed so they can receive necessary care and Chapman can take the necessary steps to prevent further spread.
Individuals who indicate possible symptoms in the Daily Health Screen, will continue to be contacted by Student Health Center staff.
“Effective contact tracing is critical to slow the spread on our campuses and adding Rapid-Trace to our contact tracing team will optimize their efforts and have an enormous impact,” said President Struppa.
“Chapman is committed to keeping our community members healthy and offering support in the event of a positive case or close contact,” said Karen Beam, lead contact tracer at Chapman. “We know effective contract tracing is critical to slow the spread on campus and adding Rapid-Trace, as well as additional staff, to our contact tracing team will have an enormous impact.”
“We will continue to act proactively and quickly add the needed resources to stop the spread of COVID-19 on our campus,” said Chapman President Daniele C. Struppa. “We know that this enhanced contact tracing strategy will allow us to identify cases faster, get members of our campus community the care they need while reducing the exposure in our community.”
In addition to working closely with Chapman’s Student Health Services’ staff, Rapid-Trace observes strict protocol regarding confidentiality and data security, according to Beam.
As Chapman has resumed in-person teaching and learning this semester, the administration has added many safety adjustments and precautions to help protect the campus community, including masking indoors, the daily health screening, vaccine registration and twice-weekly testing for those not vaccinated.