COVID – Testing on Campus

Hayley Ortmeier, News Writer

The COVID-19 virus has greatly impacted the world for over two years, and it does not look to be stopping anytime soon.

Spread of the disease generated during the end of 2019, and was declared a pandemic by the World Health Organization in March of 2020. Since then, COVID-19 has been relatively consistent, but cases are beginning to rise again.

Hailey Baker, a freshman on the track team, was recently quarantined due to contracting the virus despite not showing any symptoms. Members of the team who did not get the booster shot had to get tested before a track meet in order to participate.

“Everyone else (on the team) was coming back positive,” Baker said. “As a team, we’ve all been in close contact, so I figured I was going to test positive too.”

Baker continued to say that it was difficult having to keep up with school while she was quarantined.

“I had to get notes from friends and it was hard because I didn’t know what was going on most of the time,” Baker said.

Having to quarantine taught Baker how to prepare for missing classes, but also showed her how important going to class is.

Kathy Bird, the nurse at the Student Health Center, has been administering numerous COVID tests lately. Students can go to Student Health to get tested for COVID with or without appointment; however, students may be denied testing under certain circumstances.

“The only (students) we deny are the ones that are not having symptoms, and want a test just to make sure they’re negative,” Bird said.

Students who want a second test that have already been COVID positive are also usually denied because the test would most likely still be positive. Bird is on campus from 8:00-10:30 a.m. and 2:00-5:00 p.m. on weekdays to help students. COVID tests can also be administered at the PA clinic between 11:00-1:00 p.m. by appointment only.

Providence Medical Center will be offering two booster clinics for students and employees that are already vaccinated. Only the Moderna vaccine booster will be administered. The clinics will be located at the PMC Student Health entrance on Jan. 18 and Jan.24 from 3:00-5:00 p.m.

The most common symptoms of COVID-19 are: fever, cough, tiredness and loss of taste or smell. Students who have these symptoms can go to the Student Health center to be tested.

The test does not take long, according to Kathy Bird.

“It just takes fifteen minutes,” Bird said. “It’s just a quick swab of their nose.”