Testing Positive for COVID-19: Jan. 24, 2022

To the Case Western Reserve Community:

I write today to share that my wife, Karen, and I have both tested positive for COVID-19. Fortunately, we are both fully vaccinated and boosted, and our symptoms have been mild. We have notified everyone with whom we met over the past few days and will continue to isolate per the university’s policy. 

I realize that this news may give some of you pause as in-person classes begin this week. To my mind, our situation further illustrates the value of science. Studies have shown that the Omicron variant is more contagious than Delta, while other research has demonstrated that booster doses increase protection against Omicron—and, if infected, contribute to less severe symptoms. I am especially proud that some of these findings have come from our own Case Western Reserve faculty.

I am also impressed by our community’s high compliance with our booster policy. As of this writing, 91.9% of you have met its requirements. In addition, I appreciate all the staff and volunteers who have administered so many of these vaccines—as well as those managing COVID-19 testing and care. 

Exactly two years ago today, University Health & Counseling Services sent the first message referencing a new virus strain that later became known as COVID-19. Since then, many of you across the campus have worked tirelessly to keep our community safe and healthy. To all of you—and everyone who ensures that our mission of research and education continues—I am exceptionally grateful.

Eric W. Kaler