As a part of our ongoing response to the COVID-19 pandemic, we will be expanding subsequent testing of faculty, staff and students. We will be randomly testing 10% of our campus population each week. The pool of those who could be tested will be employees who work on campus (on campus full-time or hybrid) or students who are studying on campus for any of their classes.
If you have been selected for testing, you will receive an initial email the week before, with a reminder email on the Tuesday before you are supposed to test.
- Testing will occur on Wednesdays and Thursdays of each week from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. in the Learning Commons.
- Testing should take no more than 10 minutes.
- Please make sure that you do not eat, drink, chew gum, smoke or vape 30 minutes prior to your test.
If you would like to voluntarily be tested if you are concerned because of exhibiting possible symptoms, not receiving a pass on your Daily Wellness Check or another reason, please contact Student Life at TechStudentLife@mail.wvu.edu for more details.
About Saliva-Based Tests
The particular saliva-based test that will be used for testing on the Beckley campus is intended for use under the Food and Drug Administration’s Emergency Use Authorization #200090 authorized on April 10, 2020. This is the only saliva test and saliva collection device that is FDA-authorized for self-collection in the U.S. at this time.
This test is comparable in accuracy to the more invasive nasal swab test and is recommended by our state health officials. The assay can detect the virus down to fewer than 10 copies per milliliter of saliva, which is highly sensitive. In practice, 98% of test results are either positive or negative, with only 2% being inconclusive.
The sequences that help to detect the virus (primers) match the viral sequences almost 100% of the time, which ensures that the test is specific only to the 3 selected viral genes, which in combination are only found in the SARS-CoV-2 virus. These are the same selected viral genes tested for in the nasopharyngeal swab PCR test.
This saliva-based test is not an antibody test. It is a PCR test.
The scientific and medical community believe most who are infected with COVID-19 are asymptomatic or may not show any known symptoms of an infection. This saliva-based PCR test will confirm infection between 2 and 28 days since exposure to the virus.
A negative test confirms that the individual has not been infected and is “safe” as long as they continued to maintain vigilance from the time they took the test to receiving the results. A positive test means that the individual should isolate and monitor symptoms.
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