Testing

Last updated Monday, August 3, 2020 at 2:30 p.m.

Wesleyan’s Health Services will be engaging the Broad Institute out of Cambridge, MA to partner in administering a robust testing protocol for all students, faculty, and staff who are on campus. The Broad Institute will provide an anterior nasal swab Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) test for COVID-19, which students, faculty, and staff will self-administer under the observation of Davison Health Services staff. The sensitivity of this test (detection of true positives) is believed to be greater than 95 percent, and the Broad Institute has promised a turn-around time of 36 hours.

In order to reduce the likelihood of a student who is COVID+ coming to campus, Wesleyan is strongly recommending that all students who are able to get tested for COVID prior to leaving home do so. The state is recommending this test be performed within 72 hours of arriving on campus. Students will be asked to upload a record of a negative test result to an app. If a student's test comes back positive for COVID, they should not travel to campus, but should recover at home and seek medical advice from their healthcare provider. Wesleyan will require documentation from the hometown healthcare provider clearing the student (consistent with Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines) to return to campus. Wesleyan will be testing all students upon arrival beginning August 24, so those students who are not able to get a test in their home state will have their first test upon arrival to campus.

Learn more about Wesleyan's arrival testing and quarantine procedures.

Following arrival, students will be tested twice weekly. Testing will be performed outside in tents, as outdoors has been shown to be a safer environment to deter the spread of COVID-19, and six-foot distancing will be enforced. Wesleyan faculty and staff will also be tested regularly, and details on those plans will be forthcoming. We’ll be releasing more details regarding testing locations and appointments in the near future. Wesleyan is also pursuing an app that will remind people of their test times, give test results, and share national and state information related to COVID, among other things.

Wesleyan will cover the cost of all testing. Needless to say, if a student, staff, or faculty member will be doing 100 percent of their work virtually (off-campus), there is no need to come to campus for a COVID test. We are not planning to do antibody testing on campus, as these tests do not tell if someone has an active disease, nor do they necessarily mean that person is immune to reinfection from COVID-19.