UNC-Chapel Hill reduces COVID-19 testing requirement, brings booster shots to campus

Orange County News

CHAPEL HILL N.C. (WNCN) – UNC-Chapel Hill is reducing the testing requirements for unvaccinated students and, at the same time, bringing COVID-19 vaccine booster shots to those who qualify.

Unvaccinated students make up only 7 percent of the student population.

But now, rather than those students testing for COVID twice a week, they’re now allowed to just test once a week.

University officials said the decision to reduce testing requirements comes as caseloads continue to drop.

Last week, 2.5 percent of tests in symptomatic people came back positive, that’s down from 3.3 percent positive a week before.

The number of positive tests decreased for asymptomatic students and staff as well.

“I feel a lot better about how the cases are much lower right now. It makes me feel a lot safer being on campus and attending classes,” said freshman Lauren Evancho.

Some say twice-a-week testing should stay for unvaccinated students, like graduate student Hannah Locklear.

“I would rather continue testing twice a week because if it’s working let it continue to work until everyone’s vaccinated,” Locklear said.

Bringing covid-19 boosters to campus

Since the CDC approved the vaccine shots for people with underlying health conditions or living in high-risk situations, UNC students who live in dorms and/or those who have a medical condition can get their boosters.

They must have received both Pfizer doses and be at least six months out from the last shot.

“I’m really happy with how the community has pushed each other and the departments have pushed one another to continue along with vaccinations,” Locklear said.

In the first week of October, the campus reported 28 COVID-19 cases among students and eight among employees.

To see a list of planned COVID-19 booster clinics and where the shots are available on campus, visit UNC-Chapel Hill’s Carolina Together web page.

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