The College set up multiple contracts for COVID-19 testing at the beginning of the summer to ensure that we would have multiple back-up plans given the strains on the testing pipeline that have been occurring periodically. At this time, rapid antigen testing in the US has been diverted to serve only nursing homes, so we will be using high-accuracy PCR (molecular) testing for screening all students upon arrival, as well as for regular assessment of the health of the community over the semester. These tests are quick, relatively non-invasive nasal swabs procedures, with results returning within 48-72 hours.
Is it required for students, faculty, and staff to be tested before returning to campus for the fall 2020 semester?
Students will be required to take a COVID-19 test upon their arrival to campus for their scheduled move-in appointment. Tests will be administered at Longbrake Wellness Center.
There also will be testing available for all faculty and staff.
How will testing work during move-in?
Students will arrive at Longbrake Wellness Center at the time of their move-in appointment, check in, and take the PCR test. Following the test, they will be cleared to activate their CoW card at Campus Access and move into their housing assignment.
During the first 48-hours on campus, while awaiting their test results, students will minimize their contact with others as much as possible. That means keeping to their rooms as much as possible and leaving only for necessities such as picking up food to-go from Lowry Dining Hall. Students are also welcome to walk outside (with masks on) as long as they do not gather in groups, and maintain at least 6 feet from others. Students will receive the result of their COVID-19 test within 48 hours of arrival.
Will students be required to quarantine as part of move-in?
Per the travel advisory from the Ohio Department of Health, students coming from areas identified by the State of Ohio as hot spots (positivity rate of 15% or greater) will be required to quarantine in an individual space with a single bathroom, provided by the College, until their tests are returned within 48-72 hours. The College will appoint a supportive contact-person to assist students who need to quarantine, and food and other necessities will be provided during this time. Students will be able to move into their residence halls once a negative test result is received, or moved to isolation if they test positive.
What happens if a student tests positive during move-in? Will they need to isolate?
Students who test positive for COVID-19 will be moved to isolation and provided with a supportive contact-person in student affairs to assist with their needs and answer questions, as well as a nurse from the Wellness Center, who will provide regular check-ins and review daily symptom monitoring reports. Students in isolation will be provided with food and other necessities to ensure they stay hydrated and well-nourished, and recover as quickly as possible. Our partners at the Wooster Community Hospital will provide additional support if students develop symptoms and need further care.
Are you encouraging students to get tested prior to arrival on campus?
Any external test wouldn’t replace the mandate to test when students arrive on campus. Of course, students may always choose to do testing beforehand if you like.
How will regular testing work?
Regular testing is part of our strategy to assess whether there are asymptomatic cases on campus.
We will be adaptive and follow guidance from public health experts. Our intention is for campus to be a very safe space with very low or no signs of the virus. When people return for the spring semester, we will probably do broad-based testing again.
Will you be testing family members during move-in?
No, family members will be required to come in with masks and keep six feet distance. Testing will be for the campus community (faculty, staff, and students). Ordinarily we would be gathering families as part of move-in, but we will not do that this year.
If your family is at-risk can you get a test prior to going home?
There is ample testing in Ohio. If family members have particular concerns for the health of family in that moment, we should be able to assist.
How will daily wellness checks be done for faculty, staff and students?
Employees and students will do symptom monitoring for themselves. They will be provided a thermometer to use to take their own temperatures daily and will be required to check boxes on an app daily. We do not require anyone doing a wellness check unless they show symptoms. This is part of our strategy to make sure community health is in a good spot and to have early awareness in case illness arises.
How will we keep track of any potential active COVID-19 cases on campus?
We will be submitting daily reports to the Wayne County Health Department regarding College testing. Any data on active cases on campus will be available on our Fall 2020 Guide hub.