Two additional cases of COVID-19 have been identified in Princeton, including the first case not to be linked to the Feb. 29 house party where multiple attendees were exposed to the virus.
The Princeton Health Department (PHD) has been notified of a sixth and seventh positive test result for the novel coronavirus that causes COVID-19, according to a March 20 press release. There have also been seven confirmed negative test results in town as of today, and the PHD is currently awaiting results from two pending tests.
The sixth Princeton resident to test positive had recently returned from a trip to Spain and developed symptoms while in isolation. The press release notes that “there are no known exposures to this individual except household contacts who have been using appropriate personal equipment and procedures.”
“These household contacts will now be isolated for 14 days,” the release notes.
The seventh resident to test positive was a “close contact” of an attendee of the Feb. 29 house party that has been associated with all other positive test results. They had been previously advised of their exposure to COVID-19 and “was self-isolating in advance of developing symptoms,” according to a PHD release.
Six of the seven confirmed cases in Princeton have been linked to this house party — as have multiple cases in Pennsylvania. Two party attendees from the Boston area, who later tested positive for the virus, had previously attended the Biogen Conference, a conference which has now been linked to 70 of Massachusetts’ 92 positive cases.
As of 2 p.m. on March 20, there are 22 total positive cases of COVID-19 in Mercer County. There have been 890 positive test results and 11 COVID-19-related deaths throughout New Jersey. Yesterday, officials announced that a Princeton Public School District employee had also tested positive for COVID-19.
The PHD release states that all people in Princeton, “especially those at highest risk,” should monitor their own health, avoid close contact with other people, and limit in-person meetings and gatherings.
In a “Weekly Update” sent to Princeton residents, Mayor Liz Lempert reiterated this message.
“We must have faith that our efforts are working even when we will not immediately be seeing results,” she wrote. “We are expecting the number of confirmed positives to increase over the weekend because of more testing and the highly contagious nature of this disease.”
This story is breaking and will be updated as more information becomes available.