UMW is providing COVID-19 testing for all students in Spring 2021 as follows:
- entry testing for residential and commuter students;
- prevalence testing weekly for 500 randomly selected students;
- symptomatic testing through the Student Health Center
- exit testing for students who seek it prior to departure at the end of the term
Entry, prevalence, and exit testing will occur in the Anderson Center and be conducted by Mary Washington Healthcare. Symptomatic testing will occur at the Marshall Hall Clinic and will be conducted by the Student Health Center.
UMW’s testing protocols are as follows:
Entry, Prevalence, and Exit Testing
- Entry, prevalence, and exit testing will utilize rapid antigen testing, including Abbott BinaxNOW and BD Veritor and will be offered in accordance with the University’s announced testing plan.
- Students who test positive at entry, prevalence, or exit will be:
- Given a PCR test (with a turn around of approximately 24-72 hours) onsite at the Anderson Center.
- Directed to isolate in a reserved space on campus if a residential student and at an appropriate space off-campus if a nonresidential student.
- Requests for a second rapid antigen test will be declined.
Testing for Symptomatic Students
- Symptomatic students should contact the SHC immediately and should not go to the Anderson Center and participate in entry/prevalence/exit testing.
- Students who, following a telehealth appointment with the SHC or FONEMED (if after hours), are determined to be candidates for symptomatic testing will be tested at the Marshall Hall Clinic by SHC staff with a rapid antigen test. Students who speak to FONEMED after hours should contact the SHC to set up this appointment.
- Students with a positive result will be directed to isolation.
- Students with a negative result with symptoms indicating a high likelihood of COVID-19 will be directed to isolation and will be given a PCR test.
Testing for Close Contacts of Confirmed Positives
- Students who are determined by RAHD or UMW to be close contacts of a confirmed positive individual should be tested after contact as determined by the SHC and may arrange for this through either the SHC or their primary care provider.
- Close contacts exposure is defined as being within 6 feet of an infected person for a cumulative total of 15 minutes or more over a 24-hour period starting from 2 days before illness onset (or, for asymptomatic patients, 2 days prior to test specimen collection)
- Costs associated with testing for symptomatic students and close contacts who are UMW students are covered by the University
“At Will” or “On Demand” Testing
(For individuals who have not been determined by RAHD or UMW SHC to be a close contact.)
- UMW does not generally offer testing for individuals who wish to have a test outside of the parameters outlined in these protocols. Students seeking such a test may wish to utilize existing local RAHD community events or local testing facilities (such as pharmacies or urgent care).
- On rare occasions, where staff and resources permit, the SHC may be able to provide such tests. In those cases, the costs associated with those tests will be the responsibility of the student.
Quarantine and Isolation Protocols
Close contact quarantine length: UMW is and will continue to work with the Rappahannock Area Health District (RAHD) to determine the appropriate length of time for quarantine for close contacts of positive individuals. UMW continues to follow a full 14-day quarantine period (1 incubation period) for all close contacts of identified COVID-19 cases as the safest strategy to slow the spread of COVID-19. More information is available on VDH’s Isolation / Quarantine / Movement Restrictions / Public Health Monitoring page (see the last question). Students who develop symptoms or test positive will be moved to isolation and their isolation period will be determined based on circumstances. We are aware that a few other institutions of higher education (IHEs) in Virginia have reduced the length of time required for quarantine, however, that comes with higher risks, ones UMW and RAHD are not currently willing to endorse.
Compliance and Adherence
If you are directed to participate in testing or isolate/quarantine by a University official, you are expected to do so and failure to do so may become a student conduct issue.
Developed and approved by the COVID-19 Implementation Team, 1-6-21
Entry and Prevalence Testing FAQ for Spring 2021
Visit the FAQ page for current testing FAQs.