By Bria Brown

(CBS DETROIT) – Health officials have asked Michigan State University students to self-quarantine after at least 342 people have tested positive for the coronavirus.

At least a third of new cases recently attended parties or social gatherings, and at least one third of those gatherings are associated with a fraternity or sorority.

The hundred of new cases date to Aug. 24 and the Ingham County Health Department said in the three weeks prior to the case surge, only 23 MSU-affiliated people tested positive.

The recommendation is not an emergency order; however, more stringent and mandatory restrictions will be imposed if students do not comply and break the transmission cycle the health department said.

The uptick in cases began as students returned to the East Lansing community for the fall semester. Although MSU classes are predominately online, many students had binding off-campus leases or simply desired to physically return to the university community.

“This is an urgent situation,” said Ingham County Health Officer Linda S. Vail. “The exponential growth of COVID-19 cases must stop. I am concerned about the health and safety of the MSU community, and importantly, I am seriously concerned that unchecked transmission locally will affect the health and safety of all Ingham County residents. If we do not slow the spread immediately, we will be dealing with the consequences across the county for months to come.”

To read the full release from the Ingham County Health Department, visit here.

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