UI announces COVID-19 testing not required for 90 days for asymptomatic individuals

A+package+of+vials+that+will+be+used+for+the+PCR+Covid-19+test+at+the+ARC+on+Feb.+1%2C+2021.+The+University+has+now+updated+guidelines+in+regards+to+those+who+tested+positive+for+Covid-19+in+the+past+90+days.+

Cameron Krasucki

A package of vials that will be used for the PCR Covid-19 test at the ARC on Feb. 1, 2021. The University has now updated guidelines in regards to those who tested positive for Covid-19 in the past 90 days.

By Thomas DeMouy, Staff Writer

The University announced on Thursday that those who test positive for COVID-19 will be granted building access for 90 days without needing additional tests. 

This also includes those unvaccinated against COVID-19. Those who experience COVID-19-like symptoms are required to test.

Awais Vaid, head epidemiologist of the Champaign-Urbana Public Health District, said that this change was in response to many false positive tests occurring among people who had already recovered from the virus. 

“(The CDC) has seen that many people test positive because of internal shedding of the virus,” Vaid said. “Just because someone has shed the virus does not mean that they are infectious.”

Vaid said that the University’s decision was made with this information in mind and that this has been part of CDC policy since before vaccines were available. 

The University saw its lowest number of cases since the start of the spring semester at the end of February and into the first half of March, according to the University’s COVID-19 testing dashboard.

On March 28, the highest number of confirmed cases since late February was recorded at 75 cases.

Vaid also mentioned that in terms of transmissibility, there is little difference between vaccinated and unvaccinated individuals within the 90-day window.

“Once you are past the first isolation period of five or six days, it is unlikely for anyone, whether vaccinated or unvaccinated, to spread that infection while asymptomatic,” Said said.

 

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