UC Riverside’s “homemade” COVID-19 testing lab has drawn widespread attention from Southern California media.
The acknowledgment of the new lab’s success comes at a time when some universities across the nation have struggled to prevent campus outbreaks. The lab – created by UCR faculty – places the university in the elite company of universities including Yale that are providing their own testing facilities.
“We’ve been operating at full speed,” Rodolfo Torres, vice chancellor for research and economic development, told The Press-Enterprise in an article published Monday.
“We want to minimize the chance that there will be an outbreak.”
Using saliva tests, the lab can process up to 400 test samples a day, with students getting their results back quickly— usually within one to two days.
Of the 874 students who recently moved into UCR residence halls for the fall quarter, all are being tested twice weekly. Testing is expected to expand shortly to the 1,000 or so students living near campus in apartments.
Since the lab’s opening, five COVID-19 cases have been identified, allowing isolation measures to be enacted, as well as aggressive contact tracing.
“We cannot guarantee a safe place for everyone,” Torres said. “But we can make it as safe as we can by taking precautions.”
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UC Riverside unveils on-campus coronavirus testing lab- The Press-Enterprise