UNC-Chapel Hill to test unvaccinated students for COVID-19 twice a week

Orange County News

CHAPEL HILL, N.C. (WNCN) — The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill will begin testing unvaccinated students twice a week beginning Monday.

Unvaccinated students and faculty were previously required to get tested once a week.

At least 173 people on campus have tested positive this month, according to UNC’s COVID Dashboard. The dashboard shows 128 of those cases are among students, while 45 are faculty members.

“If we want to stay on campus, we need to know where there are cases and get those people quarantined,” said UNC freshman Sarah Hallman.

The additional testing requirement comes as UNC has identified at least two COVID-19 clusters on campus.

One cluster was linked to Avery Residence Hall on Aug. 20 and another cluster stemmed from an event at the School of Pharmacy on Aug. 11.

“I’ve heard about those and it’s a little scary, actually. But hopefully, it’s better than it was last year,” said Hallman.

As of Friday, 88 percent of students and 81 percent of faculty have attested to being vaccinated.

But some students worry not everyone is being truthful.

“Like, all you have to say is the dates you got your doses and what kind you got, whether it’s Pfizer or Moderna or the Johnson & Johnson,” said Lauren, a sophomore at UNC. “You don’t have to give proof of your card, which I think is really scary.”

She added, “I was completely remote last year, so I am excited to be on campus, but I want to feel safe. My classes are big. There’s no room for social distancing, but everyone does wear a mask. I’m mostly just worried about off-campus because I think that’s what ruined it last year.”

The twice-a-week COVID-19 testing requirement will remain in place until at least Sept. 15.

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