Current Plans for COVID Testing for Fall
This message was sent to the Bryn Mawr College community on August 31, 2021.
Dear Students, Staff, and Faculty,
We are writing to update you on current plans for COVID testing for the fall semester. When those few community members who are in-process receive the second dose of the vaccine, our campus vaccination level will be over 99%. We continue to get strong medical guidance that surveillance testing is not recommended for vaccinated populations, and we exceed every definition of a vaccinated population. For students, the Health Center does provide symptomatic testing, surveillance testing of unvaccinated students, testing for close contacts of COVID-positive individuals, and targeted surveillance testing when a situation presents increased risk for transmission (secondary circle testing). The Health Center does not provide testing for employees because it is not the medical provider for employees. Although faculty and staff may be more aware of the testing sites available near their homes, we will post to the COVID-19 Response website in the near future a list of some testing sites close to campus.
It is important to remember that testing is a tool for monitoring the effectiveness of mitigation measures for COVID, but it does NOT prevent you from being infected. Vaccination and masking are the most effective mitigation measures.
That said, we do see value in doing a scan of the population early in the semester and while the local community COVID rates remain “high” as measured by the CDC. Therefore, on Thursday, September 9 and Friday, September 10 we will be testing students, faculty, and staff using Genetworx, our test provider from spring semester 2021. This test will be a PCR test and involves a nasal swab. Testing will be available from 8:15 a.m.-5:00 p.m. and will be scheduled through Aura, Genetworx’s online system for scheduling and receiving test results. Please look for an email later this week with details about scheduling appointments. Testing is required for all residential undergraduate students because of the congregate living situation in the dormitories. We strongly encourage all other students, faculty, and staff to participate in this opportunity.
We will also schedule another testing scan later in September. As always, we remain flexible in our approach to testing and will adjust as needed or required by the state of Pennsylvania or the Montgomery Department of Health.
Please feel free to reach out to us with any questions you may have regarding the testing.
Operations Planning Group and Senior Staff