Campus News

UH on-campus COVID-19 testing kicked into high gear with new kiosk

The University’s COVID-19 testing kiosk, a collaborative effort with testing company Curative, has administered hundreds of free coronavirus tests to UH community members since its opening on Jan. 20. 

Located in front of the Student Center South and open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday, the kiosk has the capacity to test 360 individuals daily. In the first three days of the semester alone, 498 people received a COVID-19 test at this location. 

“We strongly encourage our campus community to get tested regularly, especially if they have recently traveled, are attending in-person classes, are living or working on campus or have been potentially exposed to COVID-19,” said UH spokesperson Shawn Lindsey. 

Regardless of whether someone displays coronavirus symptoms, they can still receive the oral fluid swab COVID-19 test at no cost with the presentation of their Cougar Card. 

You can schedule a test at the kiosk online through the Curative website. You’ll be required to arrive at the kiosk within a designated 30-minute appointment window. Once you’ve reached the front of the line, you will communicate with a kiosk attendant through a sheet of protective glass. The attendant will scan your appointment confirmation code and ask to see your Cougar Card. 

Once you’re checked in, you’ll self-administer an oral-fluid swab that the attendant will walk you through from inside the kiosk. Testers have to swab the insides of their cheeks, under their tongues and around their gums for 20 seconds before the sample can be placed into its collection container. 

“I have taken a test at the UH kiosk and the entire process was less than two minutes,” Lindsey said. “In my experience, it was extremely quick, painless and efficient.” 

But if you head directly from your lunch date or smoke break to get a COVID-19 test, be prepared to wait a little longer. Tests must be done a minimum of 20 minutes after eating, drinking and smoking. 

Students also think that the kiosk’s testing process has been quick and painless. 

“It was convenient and easy. (I) happened to be at the Student Center on the 20th when I saw people lining up to get tested,” said finance and marketing sophomore Angeline. “I signed up online for an appointment and waited in line for a short time. Got my results within 2 days!” 

For others, it provides an accessible alternative to other testing sites. 

“I usually get tested at CVS, which I do think is still a good place to go, but this was much quicker and more convenient,” said English junior Anna Baker. “It was a really quick experience. I walked up and was basically immediately able to get tested without having to wait. You have to administer the test yourself but they walk you through the process, so it didn’t feel intimidating.” 

For more of The Cougar’s coronavirus coverage, click here.

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