BLOOMINGTON, Ind. — Six fraternities and two sororities at Indiana University have been ordered into quarantine after what the university calls an “alarming” increase in coronavirus infections.
The eight Greek houses have been ordered to suspend all in-person activities except meals and housing for 18 days.
IU tested all its students when they arrived on campus, and has had 344 cases so far. Dr. Aaron Carroll, who’s overseeing the university’s testing program, says anyone who tests positive is ordered to quarantine, along with their close contacts. Carroll says he doesn’t have the exact number of cases at the eight Greek houses, but says there were enough that it would have been impossible to effectively winnow out members who hadn’t been in close contact.
A Monroe County health order issued before the start of school requires all Greek houses to set aside quarantine areas in case a member gets infected. IU assistant vice president Kirk White says some residents of the affected fraternities and sororities have gone home to isolate there.
Carroll says it’s not clear when and how the students were infected. He says IU planned for a quarantine at a Greek house or dorm, expecting there would be an outbreak at some point. He says the first week of school was always going to be the riskiest part of the school year, because students would be interacting before infected students could be separated out. He says the testing on arrival probably reduced the virus’s spread on campus, but wasn’t perfect.
IU says it’s monitoring its 61 other fraternities and sororities to keep track of any spread there.
The quarantine runs through September 14 at the Alpha Delta Pi and Kappa Kappa Gamma sororities, and at the Alpha Sigma Phi, Beta Theta Pi, Phi Gamma Delta, Phi Kappa Psi, Sigma Alpha Epsilon, and Theta Chi fraternities.