State news

Universities in Conn. deal with coronavirus

The University of Connecticut reported Saturday that it has just eight students isolated on campus who have tested positive for the new coronavirus and are showing symptoms.

That’s the lowest figure since Aug. 19, which was just six days into the school’s widespread testing program.

The highest number of students in isolation was 71 on Sept. 5, followed by 69 on Sept. 26.

The school has had a total of 203 positive tests among students this semester.

Sacred Heart University and the University of Saint Joseph are the latest in Connecticut to use the rapid saliva-based coronavirus test developed at Yale.

The schools hope adding the testing method to tests already being conducted will help them identify cases earlier and prevent large outbreaks on campus. Both schools also are using the nasal swab form of testing.

“Over the last few weeks as we saw upticks of positive cases on other campuses we decided to increase the percentage of students tested each week and we also wanted more rapid results,” University of Saint Joseph President Rhona Free said in a statement. “SalivaDirect was able to complete the new level of testing that we needed with quick results.”

Sacred Heart spokesperson Deb Noack said the 900 saliva tests they plan to due each week will augment the 1,300 nasal swab tests that had already been conducted.


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