Bates College is under a quarantine until early next week after an outbreak of COVID-19. Credit: CBS 13

Bates students will remain in lockdown as positive coronavirus cases persist on the campus.

The Bates campus has been under a mandatory lockdown since April 1, when an outbreak of over 50 positive cases were reported. The lockdown is anticipated to lift on Tuesday, the Sun Journal reported.

Currently, Bates has reported 74 active cases on its campus and identified 47 students that may have been exposed to the virus.

In a coronavirus press briefing, Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention Director Nirav Shah noted that he felt as though Bates officials were “taking this very seriously”.

Shah, along with consultants from the Mayo Clinic, urged Bates to remain under lockdown until several rounds of testing can confirm a decline in positive cases.

Throughout the mandatory quarantine period, students must stay on campus and cannot leave their dorms or off-campus housing except to get food, attend mandatory coronavirus testing, use bathroom facilities and tend to medical needs.

Since Maine opened vaccination eligibility to residents aged 16 and older on Wednesday, Bates officials have encouraged all staff, faculty and students to make an appointment to receive the vaccine. However, due to quarantine restrictions, students must request to leave campus to attend a vaccine appointment, and are encouraged to avoid contact with others as much as possible.

Students who are in isolation or close contact quarantine cannot attend vaccine appointments until they have completed the quarantine requirements and it is determined that they are not carrying the virus.

Leela Stockley is an alumna of the University of Maine. She was raised in northern Maine, and loves her cat Wesley, her puppy Percy and staying active in the Maine outdoors.