MTU sets up COVID testing tent

Michigan Tech has set up a tent to test incoming students for COVID-19.
This is a recording of the TV6 Early News.
Published: Aug. 5, 2020 at 6:19 PM EDT
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HOUGHTON, Mich. (WLUC) - The Upper Great Lakes Family Health Center is helping MTU prevent the spread of COVID on campus.

They’ve set up a tent on the campus lawn that will act as a testing station for when students arrive on moving day.

“We’re gonna have students coming in,” said Brian Cadwell, MTU’s director of Public Safety and Police Services. “This’ll be their first stop before moving into the moving process. So they’ll go from here to the library to get their ID cards and such and then over to the residence halls.”

The students will go along a sort of assembly line, where a thorough examination will take place in stages.

“So, we’re gonna have folks check in at a kinda front part of our assembly line,” explained Dr. Zach deYoung, a physician with the UGLFHC. “And they’ll arrive at a station where a tester will do what’s called an oral feringial swab, which is done at the back of the throat, which collects secretions and hopefully any present virus DNA to be sent to the lab here on campus. And that way we can find out if the person has had an infection they don’t know about.”

An appointment system will make sure that there isn’t a line leading out of the tent, keeping close contact to a minimum, and taking every precaution to keep their students safe.

“We wanna make sure we do the best we can,” said Dr. deYoung, “trying to keep the students and the faculty and staff and the community as well healthy and so I feel pretty strongly this is an important initiative for the whole Western UP. Maybe the whole UP as a whole. Maybe the whole state, and so I’m just honored to be a part of the initiative right now and hopefully it does help keep people healthy around here.”

MTU move-in days are august 21st through 23rd. The university hopes to have the results of student tests back within one day.

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