UArizona requiring on-campus students to take 2 weekly COVID tests

Jan 20, 2021, 4:25 AM
(Facebook Photo/University of Arizona)...
(Facebook Photo/University of Arizona)
(Facebook Photo/University of Arizona)

PHOENIX – The University of Arizona is now requiring students who live on campus to take a COVID-19 test twice a week as spring semester kicks into gear.

UArizona President Dr. Robert Robbins said Tuesday during a weekly briefing on the university’s coronavirus response that the new measure will help better control spread of the coronavirus within the community.

The testing will use the “more accurate, less expensive and certainly more pleasant PCR saline garage test,” according to Robbins. Using the gargle test also allows the university to triple its testing capacity from about 1,000 to 3,000 a week.

UArizona remains in Phase 1 of its reentry plan with only about 3,800 students attending in-person essential courses while all others remain online.

“We’ve got to see the numbers come down before we can transition into further stages,” Robbins said, adding the state can’t vaccine its way out of the pandemic in the short term.

In the meantime, the university will serve as a point of distribution for Pima County focusing on K-12, university faculty, staff and child care workers.

Pima County has scheduled 132 K-12 teachers to receive the vaccine Tuesday through Thursday along with 42 university employees Wednesday and Thursday.

“On Friday, 250 child care providers and 250 K-12 employees will be vaccinated at the UArizona site,” Robbins said.

Once fully operational, the university hopes to administer 1,000 doses of the Pfizer vaccine a day, aiming to administer 60,000 doses of the vaccine by April 1.

Registration for vaccines at UArizona are managed through Pima County and information can be found here.

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UArizona requiring on-campus students to take 2 weekly COVID tests