Massachusetts cases rise above 1,000, Emerson reports no new positives


Photo: Diti Kohli

Emerson’s testing site is located at a Tufts Medical Center facility on the corner of Harrison Ave. and Kneeland St.

By Charlie McKenna and Ann E. Matica

Emerson reported no new positive COVID-19 test results Wednesday out of 264 new tests administered on Nov. 3, leaving the college’s cumulative positive tests since Aug. 6 at 27. Emerson’s cumulative testing total sits at 37,684.

The new data was reported at 12:10 p.m.

Massachusetts reported 1,629 new coronavirus cases on Nov. 4. The total increased from 923 cases reported Tuesday. The number of deaths increased from 12 to 27. Massachusetts’ total death count is now 9,863.

New infections continue to rise in the state—cases numbers have now broken 1,000 after falling below 1,000 for two days in a row, a mark last hit in early May, when infections were declining steadily from the virus’ initial peak in April.

This rise in cases follows new state restrictions announced by Governor Charlie Baker on Monday that limits the number of people allowed to gather in-person and encourages people to stay at home between 10 p.m. and 5 a.m.

The college shifted from a manual data reporting process to an automatic one on Oct. 13. The decision followed a Beacon investigation that revealed a string of inaccuracies in the data reported by the college. 

Emerson’s dashboard is updated daily Monday through Friday. When it was first launched in August, the college opted for weekly updates before eventually shifting to twice weekly and then daily updates. Tabs for hospitalizations and the number of “invalid” results received by community members have since been removed from the dashboard after testing began in August. Invalid results are typically a result of user error and require re-testing.

Administrators have said the decision to remove hospitalizations was part of an effort to increase transparency as the college was concerned it could not accurately track the metric. Invalid results were deemed “not valuable” data by Assistant Vice President for Campus Life Muurisepp, who serves as the college’s “COVID lead”.

The dashboard is not updated on weekends because Emerson’s testing site at Tufts Medical Center is closed on Saturdays and Sundays.