Friday Update: IMPORTANT - New Testing Procedures

Sept. 17, 2021

Dear Members of the Campus Community,

I am pleased to report that our high vaccination rates and other mitigation processes are continuing to help keep our COVID-19 case numbers very low. 

That said, the pandemic is a continually evolving situation that requires flexibility, patience and continued vigilance. As we prepare for the advent of flu season and do all that we can to promote the health and safety of the campus community, we will expand our COVID-19 testing in several ways beginning next week.

On the recommendation of the COVID-19 Management Group, the Emergency Policy Council approved the following additional mechanisms for testing. Please check your email regularly or visit pugetsound.edu/coronavirus for the latest information on our health and safety protocols.

Symptomatic Testing
Effective Monday, Sept. 20, students with symptoms of COVID-19 will have access to PCR testing at their discretion. Tests may be picked up and returned to Counseling, Health and Wellness Services (CHWS), with results usually available within 24 – 36 hours. Faculty and staff seeking symptomatic testing should contact their health care providers and can access free public testing sites. A list of testing sites in Pierce County is available on the county’s website.

Randomized Asymptomatic Testing
Beginning Monday, Oct. 4, CHWS will begin testing 10 percent of our campus community every week, and tracking positivity rates on the COVID-19 dashboard. You will be notified via email when you are selected for randomized testing.

Gateway Testing Following Breaks
Gateway testing will be conducted following campus breaks (Fall Break, Thanksgiving, Winter Break, etc.) for those who travel outside the immediate area. Details will be provided at least two weeks prior to each break based on current circumstances.

Rapid Antigen Tests
The Logger Store will have rapid antigen test kits available for purchase in the coming weeks. Financial assistance may be available to students in certain circumstances. Information about the availability and cost of the kits will be shared when we have them in stock.

In addition to the above, we are continuing our relationship with Tegria to consult on our risk assessment plan that guides decisions about appropriate mitigations in response to the ever-changing landscape of the pandemic. Information will be shared with the campus community when our assessment is complete. Meanwhile, please keep up the good work, including wearing masks indoors regardless of vaccination status, washing hands frequently, and being mindful of others as we continue to navigate these extraordinary times as safely as possible.

We got this, Loggers!

Sincerely,

Isiaah
Isiaah Crawford, Ph.D. | President