Newcastle’s Northumbria University has confirmed that 770 of its students have tested positive for coronavirus, with nearly 80 showing symptoms. Another, smaller, outbreak was reported by nearby Newcastle University.

The two universities reported the contagions on Friday. The institutions did not reveal the total number of people forced into isolation by the outbreaks.

“These students are all now self-isolating. Their flatmates and any close contacts are also self-isolating for 14 days in line with government guidance,” a statement from Northumbria University said on Friday.

All the affected students were able to continue their learning remotely, it added. The self-isolating students are receiving support from Northumbria Students’ Union.

A smaller-scale coronavirus outbreak was reported by Newcastle University, where 94 students and seven members of staff tested positive.

City officials said they are aware of the outbreaks and pledged to support the universities in curbing the further spread of the virus.

“What this demonstrates is the need for everybody to comply with the regulations and guidance in place at all times in order to minimize the risk of infection,” Newcastle City Council said.

More than 50 educational institutions across the UK have reported coronavirus outbreaks in recent weeks after students returned to campuses. To date, the UK has reported nearly 470,000 confirmed Covid-19 cases since the start of the pandemic, and more than 42,000 deaths.

Globally, the Covid-19 tally is approaching the 34.5 million mark, while more than one million people have died as a result of the virus.

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