More than 700 confirmed coronavirus cases at Cardiff University since start of October

Cardiff University has around 30,000 students and 7,000 members of staff. Credit: ITV Wales

More than 700 students at Cardiff University have tested positive for coronavirus so far this month, while more than 2,000 are currently self-isolating.

Figures published by the university also revealed that three staff tested positive for the virus in October.

Cardiff University said the data is based on students informing them that they have received a positive NHS test result - it is not official Public Health Wales information.

The university also has its own asymptomatic screening service which has identified 292 positive cases among staff and students.

Around 30,000 students attend Cardiff University and roughly 7,000 staff work there.

It comes as Welsh Government announce £10 million in funding for universities to support students throughout the pandemic.

Cardiff University said they published the figures in the interest of "transparency". Credit: ITV Wales

Of the 2,043 people who are currently self-isolating, 1,386 are asymptomatic. They are instead close contacts of people who are symptomatic, or who have tested positive.

The number of students self-isolating has increased sharply from 132 on Monday 5 October, topping 1,000 by the end of that same week.

The highest daily total in October of new confirmed cases via an NHS test was 164, which was recorded on October 18.

On October 20, the daily total was 61 new cases.

The figures cover students at the university who are living in the city and staff who are working on campus.

Cardiff University said they made the decision to publish the figures in support of "transparency" and will aim to update the data every day - or on Monday for numbers from the weekend. A Cardiff University spokesperson said: "In the interests of openness and transparency, we took the decision to proactively publish the number of coronavirus (Covid-19) cases on our website.“The increase in cases is, in part, a result of the proactive measures we are taking to help our students access tests - both NHS Covid-19 tests and through our own in-house asymptomatic screening service, which is open to students who are not currently showing symptoms of coronavirus."

164 students reported they had received a positive NHS coronavirus test on October 18 - the highest total for a single day in October. Credit: ITV Wales

Students and staff who are not exhibiting symptoms can use the university's in-house screening service and take a saliva test shortly after arriving on campus.

Anyone with symptoms, or who receives a positive or inconclusive test result through the in-house screening service is advised to self-isolate, inform the university they are doing so, and asked to arrange an NHS test.

Since October 5, 3,769 tests have been carried out through the university's service. 292 of those returned positive results and 2,944 came back negative. The rest were either invalid or inconclusive.

A Cardiff University spokesperson said: "Students will be invited to use this service every four weeks, and can choose to attend an appointment at College House, Hadyn Ellis Building or Talybont Social Centre."

They added: "We are also extremely grateful to our students for telling us if they are self-isolating or if they’ve received a positive test by updating us on SIMS. This is key to making sure we can offer support, and that they can continue their learning."Whilst we are aware of examples where students have not observed the rules, the increase in numbers illustrate that vast majority of our students are, and when they have symptoms they are self-isolating and getting themselves tested. We are extremely grateful to our students for doing so.

"We do appreciate this is an extremely challenging time for our students. Information and advice is being constantly updated on our student intranet and students can contact Student Connect if they need further advice or support."

Welsh Government have announced £10 million towards supporting university students during the pandemic.

The funding is intended to go towards things like mental health services and student financial hardship funds. It is also aimed at developing support services, like food provisions for students who are required to self-isolate.