Students can now be tested for coronavirus at UConn Storrs campus

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In light of the coronavirus outbreak, the Student Health and Wellness Services at the University of Connecticut has begun administering COVID-19 tests to students who are exhibiting symptoms of the virus.  Photo by Maggie Chafouleas/ The Daily Campus.

In light of the coronavirus outbreak, the Student Health and Wellness Services at the University of Connecticut has begun administering COVID-19 tests to students who are exhibiting symptoms of the virus. Photo by Maggie Chafouleas/ The Daily Campus.

Student Health and Wellness Services (SHaW) began offering coronavirus (COVID-19) testing last week to University of Connecticut Storrs students who are exhibiting symptoms and have made an appointment. 

SHaW has scheduled testing for Tuesdays and Thursdays, said Ellyssa Eror, Medical Director of Student Health and Wellness services.

“We offer testing on Tuesdays from 9:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m., weather permitting,” Eror said. “We can accommodate 24 students per session, but will expand testing availability as needed.” 

“The testing will take place out of the UConn Dairy Bar Truck, which will be parked behind the Hilda May Williams Student Health Services Building on Glenbrook Road,” according to a UConn Today article.

“Currently we have the ability to test any UConn Storrs student who screens positive for COVID-19,” Eror said regarding the capacity of SHaW to test students for COVID-19. 

Eror explained the process that students would go through in order to be tested at the Storrs Campus, which involves students first going through a telemedicine appointment with a medical provider at SHaW. 

“Students are evaluated through a telemedicine appointment with a SHaW medical provider and testing is ordered at that time. Students are then scheduled for a 10 minute appointment to be tested. Most students arrive to the testing area by car, but we can also accommodate students who can walk to the testing site,” Eror said.

Eror also explained how the COVID-19 test works.

“The sample is collected by a nasal swab and then sent to Quest Diagnostics for processing. Results come back within 2-7 days,” Eror said. “It is a PCR test that detects viral RNA in an individual who is actively infected. It does not test for immunity to the virus.”  

Eror advised against students who have not exhibited symptoms getting tested at SHaW and explained some of the symptoms that students should watch out for. 

“CDC recommends testing individuals with a new onset cough, fever or difficulty breathing. We also offer testing to individuals with flu-like symptoms,” Eror said. “COVID-19 can look like many other respiratory illnesses so it is important to be tested when you have symptoms. It is not currently recommended to be tested without symptoms.” 

The next session has been scheduled for Tuesday, Eror said, and she encourages students to also call the 24/7 nurse advice hotline with any questions. 

“Last week we offered testing on Tuesday and Saturday. Our next testing session is scheduled for Tuesday 4/14/2020,” Eror said in an email. “We have a 24/7 nurse advice line for any questions or concerns. Please call us at (860) 624-4700. We are here for you.” 

The Medical Care webpage of the SHaW website also offers more information about COVID-19, including how students can protect themselves, how quarantine works and if students should be tested for the virus.

Thumbnail photo courtesy of Avery Bikerman / The Daily Campus.

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Amanda Kilyk is a staff writer for The Daily Campus. She can be reached at amanda.kilyk@uconn.edu.

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