North Texas Daily

COVID-19 testing increases with on-campus requirements despite no consequences for residents’ noncompliance

COVID-19 testing increases with on-campus requirements despite no consequences for residents’ noncompliance

COVID-19 testing increases with on-campus requirements despite no consequences for residents’ noncompliance
March 24
15:54 2021

The university has seen an increase in coronavirus testing after it established testing mandates for students living on campus and/or attending in-person events despite not requiring proof of negative tests from residents.  

Beginning March 8, the university required all on-campus residents to receive a weekly test. Prior to then, on March 3, the university required students and staff planning on attending in-person events to provide a negative COVID-19 test within seven days of the event. This excluded commencement ceremonies, classes and one-on-one meetings between students and staff. 

“On average, there are about 250 more tests being conducted each week since the event and housing mandates began,” Jim Berscheidt, the Vice President for University Brand Strategy and Communications,  said. 

The requirement for on-campus residents is run on an honor system. Residents are not required to provide proof of negative tests and face no consequences for not complying with the mandate. However, Berscheidt said each week, housing staff reviews the list of students who have not been tested and asks them to comply with the mandate.

An on-campus resident, who asked their name not be published, told the North Texas Daily they have not been tested for COVID-19 since before March 8 and has yet to receive communication from the university. 

“We have built a culture of testing on our campus, and we are hopeful that students will respect this responsibility as a member of our caring community,” Berscheidt said. “We will continue to get more feedback from our students and evaluate this process as the semester progresses.”

Students not experiencing symptoms can be tested for free using a variety of options. These include the walk-in asymptomatic testing clinics provided by the Student Health and Wellness Center, the drive-thru clinic administered by WellHealth and on-campus testing sites run by Curative, Inc. Faculty. Staff are also eligible for the latter two services. 

Those experiencing COVID-19 symptoms can schedule an appointment with the Student Health and Wellness Center. The medical examination’s cost will depend on the patient’s insurance coverage and benefits. 

Featured Image: The Hurley Administration Building stands at the end of the library mall on Sept. 28, 2020. Image by John Anderson

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Ileana Garnand

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