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Rutgers officials remind students of coronavirus precautions, testing options

University President Jonathan Holloway said any student or employee on campus next semester will be required to take a weekly coronavirus disease (COVID-19) test.  – Photo by Rawpixel

University President Jonathan Holloway and Associate Vice President for Student Health Services Melodee Lasky sent emails on Friday to remind the Rutgers community of coronavirus disease (COVID-19) safety measures and testing services available on campus.

The Daily Targum previously reported the majority of classes for the Spring 2021 semester will be held remotely. Holloway said the students and employees who will be on campus will be required to receive weekly COVID-19 testing, according to his email. Rutgers will also implement rapid antigen testing when it becomes available and can be incorporated appropriately.

“A regular and rigorous testing regimen will enable us to safely expand the number of people and activities on our campuses and help us move closer to a more conventional, in-person Rutgers experience for our students, faculty and staff,” Holloway said, according to the email.

He said the Rutgers community can visit the Rutgers COVID-19 website for the most recent information on the University’s testing protocol, according to the email.

Rutgers is involved in testing multiple vaccines and in planning for their distribution with the state health department, according to the email. Holloway said the University will be following these developments in the coming weeks and months.

Lasky said COVID-19 cases have increased significantly across New Jersey and among Rutgers students in the past few weeks, according to her email. Recommended safety measures against COVID-19 include wearing masks around others, avoiding eating and drinking near others who are unmasked, regular hand washing and social distancing.

These recommendations also apply to holiday celebrations over the coming weeks, according to the email.

“Consider keeping Thanksgiving gatherings intimate and only within your current living circle,” Lasky said, according to the email. “If you do intend to travel or see others, please follow guidance and protect your friends and family by getting tested for (COVID-19) shortly before and after the event.”

Students can learn about testing and health services available by contacting their student health offices, according to the email. Lasky said students at Rutgers—New Brunswick can find locations and hours online. Students at Rutgers—Newark can visit Blumenthal Hall, Room 104, and students at Rutgers—Camden can visit the second floor of the Campus Center.

Tests are also available at locations throughout New Jersey, according to the email.

“I know you have already made many sacrifices this year, and it is difficult to be away from friends, but I am asking you to make smart decisions,” Lasky said, according to the email. “Always remember: This virus is highly transmissible and no one is invincible. Keeping each other safe from COVID-19 is a responsibility we all share.”


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