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CWU News


COVID-19 Testing


October 18, 2020

Dear Wildcat Family,
 
Ever since we first learned of the COVID-19 virus, CWU’s primary concern has been protecting the health and safety of our campus and community. In addition to promoting best practices for controllingCWU Medallion the spread of the virus, such as wearing face coverings and maintaining physical distancing, our protocols have included closely monitoring our students, faculty, and staff so we may respond quickly and appropriately.
 
During the past week, the university has been managing cases of COVID-19 that have been diagnosed within our on- and off-campus students. Over the weekend, our Student Health Services Director noticed a trend in new positive COVID cases within one of our residence halls. After consulting with the Kittitas County Public Health Department, the COVID Taskforce met to review the cases and immediately implement a plan to quickly test the students that live in the residence hall and require them to self-isolate to minimize the spread.  
 
Student Health Services is working closely with Housing & Residence Life staff to manage an increase in cases in the Wendell Hill B Residence Hall. As of Sunday afternoon, October 18, there were six confirmed positive cases or 3% of the residents in WHHB. See CWU COVID-19 dashboard for current student numbers.  
 
The Kittitas County Public Health Department defines an increase of that size as a "cluster'', which mandates that all students living in Wendell Hill B now be tested to further limit a possible spread.
 
COVID-19 testing will occur through a pop-up testing center sponsored by CWU and in partnership between Student Health Services and Housing and Residence Life. Those who are tested will be asked to self-isolate out of an abundance of caution and per Kittitas County Public Health guidelines. A self-isolation timeline will be required after testing and will be processed (typically 48-72 hours but can take up to 7 days).
 
This self-isolation includes sequestering in the residence hall room or home for employees working in the residence hall, being restricted to virtual learning until they are cleared to return to class, not leaving your suite, and participating in the CWU Dining Meal delivery service, offered through CWU Housing and Dining Services. These unforeseen changes to daily schedules can be challenging, but the university has resources and support ready to assist students in this temporary transition. In addition to meal delivery service, Student Counseling Services will be working with Housing and Residence Life to plan ongoing support and engagement with Wendell Hill B students. Student Counseling Services is offering virtual services for crisis support, individual and group counseling to students. Appointments can be made by calling 509-963-1391. More information can be found on the website.

 How You Can Help
 
We know this is a challenging time and there is fatigue on campus. Your efforts have been extraordinary in so many ways, yet the virus is unrelenting. We need to continue to be willing and able to adapt as circumstances change. It is essential that we continue to self-monitor, perform our daily health checks, and follow the recommendations of our health experts in order to control the spread of the virus.  
 
Central students are the most caring, dedicated, resilient, and talented people we know. Please use these wonderful talents to recommit yourselves to our community’s well-being. We have made it 40 days since the first day of classes. We only have 33 more days to the end of final exams. We can finish the quarter in a strong and healthy way if we all:

  • Wear a face covering  
  • Practice physical distancing
  • Wash your hands regularly
  • Complete the daily health checks
  • Participate in COVID-19 testing

Take care of yourselves and one another, both physically and emotionally. We believe in you, and we are here to support you and our entire campus community. #CWUTogether
 
In Health & Wellness,
Shawnte Elbert's Signature

 

 


Shawnte Elbert
Associate Dean of Health & Wellness