YPSILANTI, MI — Free COVID-19 testing is available for students, faculty, and staff at Eastern Michigan University’s Student Center.
The COVID Testing Center is located on the ground floor of the Student Center next to the EMU Bookstore, 900 Oakwood St. in Ypsilanti. The increased testing is part of the #EMUSafe initiative being implemented throughout the pandemic, officials said.
The announcement comes as Washtenaw County is experiencing continued outbreaks of COVID-19, and the testing center’s function is to offer “safe and accurate” testing to people to help minimize the spread of the virus, said officials.
The past two weeks have seen nearly 4,000 cases of COVID-19 reported in Washtenaw County, according to county health department data. The positive test rate is 14%, the hospitalization rate is 2% (or about 80 patients) and there have been 26 deaths in the past two weeks, according to the data.
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Testing opportunities at EMU are aimed at containing outbreaks of COVID-19, said Dr. Lynne Shetron-Rama, director of the clinical laboratory science program at EMU.
“The testing center saves people time and energy,” she said in a statement. “People can easily register and show up for a free test.”
The COVID Testing Center opened in February 2021 and offers the Abbott BinaxNow rapid test. This test is administered with a nasal swab and has a sensitivity rate of 98%, Shetron-Rama said.
“The rapid test only goes up the first half inch of the nose,” Shetron-Rama said. “We wanted students, staff and faculty to be able to do it themselves. The test itself is done in minutes and results come back in hours.
EMU chose to purchase rapid tests over PCR tests because of the substantial cost difference, said Sherry Bumpus, director of nursing operations at EMU.
“Equipment, solutions and supplies for PCR testing were in short supply when we were in the planning process for the center in fall 2020,” Bumpus said, adding that the availability of rapid tests has allowed the testing center COVID to open immediately for the winter. semester.
So far, the testing center is performing an average of about 300 tests a day, Shetron-Rama said.
The campus population was very receptive to the screening centre. On a busy day, the center processes around 300 tests, Shetron-Rama said.
Classes at Ypsilanti University start on Monday, January 10. EMU’s latest COVID-19 data is from the week of Dec. 15-21 before the winter break, which reported 51 coronavirus cases and eight people requiring quarantine or isolation beds.
Even before classes started this week at the nearby University of Michigan, COVID-19 was spreading rapidly on the Ann Arbor campus. The week of December 25 saw 370 cases, while preliminary tracking shows 641 cases reported the following week. The previous high for cases in one week at UM was 410 in October 2020.
Visit the EMU COVID Test Center for more information or contact [email protected]
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