Idaho’s first coronavirus case is tied to Meridian’s Idaho State campus

Posted at 3:28 PM, Mar 14, 2020
and last updated 2020-03-15 00:35:38-04

MERIDIAN, Idaho — This article was originally published by Chadd Cripe of the Idaho Statesman.

The woman who was the first person in Idaho with a confirmed case of the novel coronavirus is a student at Idaho State University’s Meridian campus, the university announced Saturday.

RELATED: Idaho colleges plan to go online as soon as possible to combat spread of the coronavirus.

The state announced the case late Friday afternoon. The woman was described as an Ada County resident in her 50s.

Idaho State shut down the Meridian campus Friday morning for cleaning before the positive test result was known. The samples were taken from the woman late Thursday, according to state health officials, and tested Friday morning.

The campus is located at 1311 E. Central Drive.

The woman was last on campus Tuesday, Idaho State’s announcement said. It was signed by President Kevin Satterlee.

“All potentially impacted individuals who had contact with the student have already been notified and are being monitored,” Satterlee wrote. “Central District Health (CDH) is contacting those faculty, staff and students who had closest contact with the student to provide further guidance. If you are not contacted by CDH or our University Health Center, then there is no reason for you to have elevated concern. CDH has advised us that this is not an illness that is spread through brief, casual contact.”

The woman had returned from a conference in New York City, said Elke Shaw-Tulloch, administrator of public health for the Department of Health and Welfare. Three other attendees at that conference have tested positive for the coronavirus, which causes the COVID-19 disease.

The woman is at home in self-isolation.

Idaho announced a second confirmed coronavirus case Saturday. That case was identified in Blaine County.