UL to facilitate free testing for students even without symptoms

UL has announced that they are to facilitate free on-campus Covid-19 testing for students before they travel home for Christmas this year

The University of Limerick (UL) have just announced that they are to facilitate on-campus Covid-19 testing for students before they travel home for the Christmas period. 

In a press release this evening, the university stated that in collaboration with the HSE, Public Health Mid-West and Mid-West Community Healthcare they have been working to “ensure the best protective measures are in place for the UL community during this Covid-19 pandemic”.

UL students living in the immediate vicinity of the campus will be invited to register for a Covid-19 test without needing to display any symptoms of the virus.

President of UL Professor Kerstin Mey explained: “The offer of on-campus testing will build upon the myriad of safety protocols we have in place to keep our community safe.”

“It will aim to minimise any virus transmission by helping to identify asymptomatic carriers of Covid-19, particularly among students who intend to return home for the Christmas period,” May added.

The press release said that overall, UL has seen a “high level of compliance” on campus with the Covid-19 precautions it has put in place.

“There have been some cases of Covid-19 among the UL population of 16,500 students and these are due to community and household transmission,” May continued, “Anywhere we can introduce further safety protocols for our students both on and off campus we will take those opportunities and we are very happy now to be in a position to facilitate COVID-19 testing to our student community.”

The press release explained that students at UL have been “repeatedly advised” to follow public health guidelines, to download the Covid tracker app and to self-isolate if they display any symptoms while they await a test.

Dr Mai Mannix, Director of the Department of Public Health Mid-West said: “I encourage students to get tested for Covid-19.”

“It’s free and is a short process that will help protect those you live with, your loved ones at home, your student community and others in your community who will want to enjoy a safe and COVID-free Christmas,” Mannix continued.

Last month, UL announced that online teaching will continue for the majority of courses throughout next term.

At the time, the university explained that it had announced the decision in order to provide students and the wider UL community with greater certainty and to allow adequate time for planning.

Shannon Connolly

Shannon Connolly is the Editor-in-Chief of the 69th volume Trinity News, and a Senior Sophister student of English Literature and Philosophy. She previously served as Deputy Editor, News Editor and Assistant News Editor.