COVID-19 Testing Available for Students

Posted on 1/8/21 8:43 PM

Students,

As you heard from President Driscoll on Tuesday, January 5, IUP will offer free, on-campus COVID-19 testing for all students. We are writing to you today to provide more information about this testing.

While testing is not required for students, it is highly recommended. If we are to keep you, your friends, your family and our community safe, we need your help. Please take advantage of this free testing and be willing to follow the advice of health professionals related to your testing results.

We have chosen Virus Geeks, a national bio health technology company that has all appropriate federal certifications, to provide this testing. Trained IUP student workers will assist in the registration process.

Important: If you have symptoms associated with COVID-19 (fever, body ache, dry cough, fatigue, chills, headache, sore throat, loss of appetite, loss of smell, loss of taste), you cannot be tested by Virus Geeks.

If you have symptoms, you should follow one of these two options:

  • Visit your private health care provided for care and advice. If you are found to be COVID-19 positive, please do not return to campus until you have completed the CDC-recommended self-isolation (at least 10 days since symptoms first appeared and at least 24 hours with no fever without fever-reducing medication.)
  • Contact IUP Health Service at 724-357-2550. Symptomatic students can be tested by IUP Health Service.

Here are the details about Virus Geeks testing:

Location

Kovalchick Convention and Athletic Complex (711 Pratt Drive)

Students being tested should enter the doors facing the Miller Stadium parking lot and stop at the check-in table. After your test, you will exit the building through the doors facing Wayne Avenue.

Anyone coming for testing must wear face coverings; face coverings will be provided at the door if needed. Hand sanitizer will also be available. Workers at the facility are following all Centers for Disease Control recommendations for cleaning and sanitizing the building.

Dates and Times

  • January 11 to 15, 8:00 a.m. to noon
  • January 19 to February 7: 8:00 a.m.-1:30 p.m. Mondays through Fridays*
  • After February 8: 8:00 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Mondays through Fridays*

Students studying at the Northpointe and Punxsutawney campuses will be notified of times when they may receive a test at their home campus. Students from any campus can always choose to have testing done at the Kovalchick Complex at the Indiana campus.

Testing Details

The testing conducted by Virus Geeks is a molecular polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test.

To be tested, you will get a nasal swab to collect samples of cells and fluids from your respiratory system. You will insert the swab into your nose and then return the swab to the testing official. Your test will be sent to a medical laboratory to analyze the materials on the swab for the SARS-CoV-2 virus that causes COVID-19. The process, including check-in, should take about 15 minutes.

To be Tested:

You must preregister for the testing through the Virus Geeks portal.

Testing results:

Your results will be posted by Virus Geeks to a secure web portal within 24 to48 hours of your test. Your information is securely stored in a HIPAA-compliant infrastructure and segregated to provide additional security and privacy. All data is encrypted and stored on its servers in the United States.

Only you, IUP Health Service, the IUP Office of Public Safety, and appropriate members of the Virus Geeks team will have access to the results of your test.

While waiting for test results, you should self-quarantine to the fullest extent possible, which includes avoiding close contact with others.

If you have a positive COVID-19 test:

Virus Geeks will contact the Pennsylvania Department of Health with your results, and officials from the Pennsylvania Department of Health will be in contact with you to offer health advice and to conduct contact tracing. The IUP Health Service office also will contact you to discuss your self-isolation requirements.

If you live on campus, you can choose to return to your home or move to Delaney Hall to self-isolate. If you live off campus, you can isolate in your off-campus residence; or, if you are unable to isolate safely off campus, you have the option to self-isolate in Delaney Hall.

You will receive an email from COVID-19 Testing asking for the names and contact information for any individual with whom you have had close contact. The CDC defines “close contact” as being within six feet of an infected person for a cumulative total of 15 minutes or more over a 24-hour period, starting from two days before the onset of symptoms, or for asymptomatic patients, two days prior to testing.

Your close contacts will receive notification by email and/or by text from IUP COVID-19 Close Contact Alert, explaining that they may have been exposed to the virus and should call IUP Health Service to schedule a COVID-19 test. No identifiable information about you will be shared.

If you choose to self-isolate in Delaney Hall and do not have people to deliver meals to you, IUP staff will deliver your meals.

If you have been identified as a “close contact” of a COVID-19 positive person:

You will be contacted by the Pennsylvania Department of Health and/or via email/text from IUP. The text message will come from IUP COVID-19 Close Contact Alert and will advise you to contact IUP Health Service for instruction and additional testing.

Please keep your information updated, and watch for updates.

You can also help us to keep you, and our community, safe by updating your contact information in MyIUP. Correct information is critical to our notification process.

Please continue to watch your email and texts for more information. Emails related to the testing process will come from covid-test@iup.edu.

If you have any questions or concerns about your health, please contact IUP Health Service. If you have questions about the testing process, please email covid-test@iup.edu.

Thank you for all that you did during the fall semester to keep yourselves and your Crimson Hawks family safe and well. You did an amazing job following safety and health guidelines. We join you in feeling like this has been in our lives for so long, but we cannot drop our guard if we are to get through this pandemic safely. Our health and safety guidelines will remain in place for the spring semester (face coverings, social distancing).

While in-person instruction has been delayed for the first three weeks of the semester, university offices and services are open and here to serve you, including IUP Health Service and the Counseling Center. We will do all that we can to help you remain safe and well, and to be successful in your studies. Best of luck to you as you begin the spring semester.

IUP COVID-19 Response Committee

*Dates and Times updated January 19, 2021.