University of Arizona to distribute TakeAway Testing for COVID-19 this week
TUCSON, Ariz. (KOLD News 13) - The University of Arizona is planning to launch the Cats TakeAway Testing program, which will allow students, employees and “designated campus colleagues,” to take a COVID-19 test on the go, school officials announced on Monday, Sept. 13.
The test, which involves swishing and gargling a saline solution before spitting it into a tube, can be done anywhere and taken to a designated campus location. No appointment is needed.
Those designated campus locations include the Health Sciences Library, the Administration Building, Facilities Management, the Global Center, McClelland Hall, the Student Recreation Center, the Student Union Memorial Center and the Student Success District.
The test is also available at Campus Health to those with symptoms.
The university plans to open more designated locations soon, President Robert C. Robbins said in a virtual briefing.
“What we’re looking for, of course, are those asymptomatic people who have no idea that they’re infected and are infecting others,” he said.
UArizona doesn’t require testing but urges all members of the campus community to get tested each week regardless of vaccination status.
Administrators said the university is faring much better compared to last year. As of Friday, the school’s positivity rate was down to 1.7%.
The university saw its peak in cases on Sept. 14, 2020, with a positivity rate of 15.4%. Two days later, it hit a record positivity rate of 17.5%.
“We must remain diligent, but this change from last year is a good reason for optimism,” Robbins said. “Continued testing is vital, and our program has been designed with an emphasis on access so that testing is as easy and available as possible. We continue to adapt this program to best serve the campus community, and we are excited for TakeAway Testing to begin later this week.”
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