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COVID-19: Harvard President, Wife Test Positive

Harvard President Lawrence Bacow and his wife tested positive for COVID-19.
Harvard President Lawrence Bacow and his wife tested positive for COVID-19. Photo Credit: Stephanie Mitchell/Harvard Staff Photographer

Harvard University President Lawrence Bacow has become the latest high-profile name to announce he has contracted novel coronavirus.

In a statement released on Tuesday, March 24, Bacow announced that he and his wife Adele began experiencing symptoms on Sunday, March 22 and tested positive the following day.

The two will remain isolated in their home before reassessing their situations in the coming weeks.

“We will be taking the time we need to rest and recuperate during a two-week isolation at home,” he said. “I am blessed with a great team, and many of my colleagues will be taking on more responsibility over the next few weeks as Adele and I focus on just getting healthy.”

Bacow said it is unclear how he or his wife contracted the virus, but they have been social distancing and working from home since Saturday, March 14.

As of Tuesday, 17 Harvard affiliates have tested positive for COVID-19, according to Harvard University Health Services.

"Your swift actions over the past few weeks—to respond to the needs of our community, to fulfill our teaching mission, and to pursue research that will save lives—have moved me deeply and made me extraordinarily grateful and proud," Bacow said. "I hope to see as few of you in our situation as possible, and I urge you to continue following the guidance of public health experts and the advice and orders of our government officials."

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