UVU responds to new COVID-19 mandates requiring testing for some students

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Gov. Herbert issued four new mandates on Sunday night, Nov. 8,  to address rising COVID-19 cases in the state, as well as the dwindling availability of hospital beds. One of these mandates now requires weekly COVID-19 testing for university students who attend at least one class on campus.

UVU, which already has COVID-19 restrictions in place, responded to these new mandates in a letter sent to students and faculty, which explained how they will execute the testing requirement and other mandates from the governor. 

The letter, signed by Astrid Tuminez, president of UVU made it clear that the school will do all possible to ensure a smooth, weekly testing process.

“Now, thanks to additional test kits from the Utah Department of Health, we are ramping up our capabilities and rolling out more testing opportunities to reach as many students, staff and faculty as possible, especially before Thanksgiving and our shift to remote instruction,” Tuminez said. “The free tests require an anterior nasal swab that is less invasive. The results are emailed within hours.” 

The letter went on to say that, in collaboration with TestUtah, UVU will host free testing for the community on Nov. 11 and Nov. 18.

Gov. Herbert also mandated that people avoid gathering in groups larger than 10, and that for the next two weeks people only gather with those in their immediate households. President Tuminez was quick to encourage students to follow those precautions as well. 

“Governor Herbert has also advised that all social gatherings be limited to ten people or less, and that we best celebrate this Thanksgiving holiday with those who share our living spaces,” she wrote. “Together, we can slow down the spread of COVID-19. Let’s show exceptional care and do our part to protect our loved ones and the larger community.”

UVU is required to be fully compliant with the new mandates by January 1, 2021. 

For questions regarding UVU’s response to COVID-19, emails can be sent to [email protected].

Those seeking additional information may view the letter from President Tuminez here, as well as Gov. Herbert’s address to the state here