While testing positive for COVID-19 may be incredibly stressful, there’s a big step that comes before one’s results: the test itself. Not being selected for a weekly COVID-19 test may be worrying as well.
Students who are not selected in the weekly sample of COVID-19 tests are not allowed to be tested at the Quinnipiac testing site, according to John Morgan, associate vice president for public relations.
The university recommends another option for students who wish to be voluntarily tested.
“Students who are interested in getting tested can either contact their healthcare provider or visit one of the multiple drive-up or walk-up locations around the state, where Community Health Center Inc. is offering free COVID-19 testing,” Morgan said. “No appointment is necessary.”
Community Health Center offers tests throughout Connecticut without health insurance. There is no limit to the amount of tests one can perform and individuals seeking a COVID-19 test do not have to be symptomatic.
Results are expected within two to three days after the test is administered. Community Health Center has a location in Waterbury at 51 North Elm St and another in Meriden at 134 State St., among the 12 locations for testing in Connecticut.
Similar to the university’s advice, the Connecticut State COVID-19 portal recommends that individuals seeking a COVID-19 test speak with their primary care providers first.
Students and individuals without health insurance, or whose health insurance does not cover out-of-state expenses, can seek out tests from the Community Health Center’s locations, per the portal.
More information for testing locations can be found at the Connecticut 2-1-1 website or by dialing 2-1-1.
If students are looking for more short-term solutions when seeking a COVID-19 test, DOCS Urgent Care of North Haven, located at 163 Universal Drive North, offers rapid COVID-19 testing.
For this rapid test, there is no referral needed. The location only accepts walk-in patients and the test is covered by almost all insurance, according to its website.
Without insurance, the COVID-19 rapid test costs $195, per the website.
Even though students have off-campus alternatives, they think the university should offer testing options to its student body.
“I think there should be (walk-in testing) because I heard of multiple students who have not been tested yet, and we’re eight weeks into school,” said Michael Smith, junior health sciences major. “I think it’s pretty odd that the random tests have been selecting some of the same students multiple times, and as far as I’m sure, not all 100% of the student body has been tested. I think that’s where walk-in testing would be helpful.”
While some students are concerned that the testing sample isn’t wide enough, there are other concerns related to student comfort and confidence in the safety of the Quinnipiac community.
“I understand how the school may not want students to potentially abuse the resources of being able to walk in and get tested at any time, and maybe that decision also factors in to trust in the algorithm, I don’t know,” said Jacqueline Callinan, a sophomore in the entry-level master’s physician assistant program. “However, I do wish students who felt uncomfortable or nervous about being exposed to others now in quarantine were able to walk in and get tested.”