WEST LIBERTY, W.Va., Oct. 7, 2020 — As of today, West Liberty University has no active cases of the coronavirus, according to the Wheeling-Ohio County Health Department.
WLU has recorded a cumulative number of 27 student and 2 faculty cases since July. All of these individuals have recovered, according to the health department.
COVID-19 surveillance testing began yesterday (Oct. 6) on campus and included 246 athletes. This weekly testing of students is at the request of West Virginia Gov. Jim Justice and is being carried out according to information received from Dr. Ayne Amjad, State Health Officer and Commissioner.
The state is providing the resources for these tests and the lab analysis and colleges and universities across the state are to test 10 percent of campus populations weekly through Thanksgiving week.
The test is a saliva PCR test from Vault Health and was developed by Rutgers University.
Because this is a random testing system, students and employees are notified via email when it’s their turn to test. The test process takes about 10 minutes and results are expected in 24 – 48 hours.
This surveillance testing follows an initial baseline testing at the request of Gov. Jim Justice that took place on campus in August as students returned for fall classes. The baseline testing also included all students and employees.
On Sept. 30 the Center for Disease Control (CDC) stated that a “a strategy of entry screening combined with regular serial testing might prevent or reduce SARS-CoV-2 transmission.”
Campus cleaning and sanitation is in place to disinfect areas according to the best practices of the CDC, state and regional health officials. According to these health officials, the best prevention of COVID-19 spread is wearing face masks, social distancing and good hand hygiene and WLU encourages all students, employees and visitors to remain vigilant in these habits.
WLU’s Director of Student Health Services Christy Bennington recommends that all students, staff and faculty get a flu shot from their health provider or contact her at x8049 for an appointment.
The university began fall classes Aug. 15 with a combination of face-to-face, hybrid and online courses. The semester will end early with students going home for Thanksgiving break on Nov. 24 and not returning to campus afterwards. Virtual exams will be held from Nov. 28 – Dec. 4 to finish out the semester.