Monday 23 March: unofficial COVID-19 positive test at the University

This message has been sent to all staff and all students from Vice-Chancellor Professor Grant Guilford

Dear all,

I am writing to advise that we have today been ‘unofficially’ informed that a staff member of Victoria University of Wellington has tested positive for COVID-19.

The staff member has been self-isolating at home since beginning to feel unwell, is doing well, and is being supported by the University. The staff member contracted the virus off campus.

The staff member works in a small administrative office at the University. The office was immediately closed when the University was notified. Some staff in the office are considered ‘close contacts’ and are now all working from home. We expect regional health authorities will be checking in with these staff. As yet there is no evidence of further positive tests amongst these close contacts.

More information on the recommended approach to close contacts.

In the brief period while unwell, the staff member briefly interacted with a small number of other staff and students. These individuals are considered ‘casual contacts’. In these cases, the risk of transmission is likely to be very low and there are no restrictions on movements. Nevertheless, the University is in the process of getting in touch with these people to check on their wellbeing. Importantly, casual contacts are required to isolate themselves and contact Healthline if they develop symptoms.

I understand that this positive test will be of concern to us all and I encourage any students or staff who feel anxious or distressed about this to contact Mauri Ora.

Professor Grant Guilford
Vice-Chancellor of Te Herenga Waka—Victoria University of Wellington