Lower compliance with at-home COVID-19 testing kits than expected, administrators say


Daily file photo by Zoe Malin

At at-home test kit from Picture Genetics. All students were mailed a swab test and required to send it by the last week of August.

Isabelle Sarraf, Campus Editor

According to administrators, only about 50 percent of Northwestern students completed step one of a University-wide COVID-19 testing process for undergraduate students returning to campus.

At a Tuesday afternoon webinar, Northwestern administrators said the actual percentage of students who completed the required testing process was “pretty low.”

Prior to the Aug. 28 decision to keep underclassmen from moving into campus dorms, with limited exceptions, the University had arranged for at-home COVID-19 tests for students, due Aug. 27. The testing was conducted by a third party, Fulgent Genetics, which was authorized by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to administer COVID-19 by RT-PCR tests this spring.

Luke Figora, senior associate vice president and chief risk and compliance officer, said the University saw relatively lower compliance on completing that testing process than it had hoped. The results were “OK,” he said, in terms of positivity, and were in line with what the administration saw in other schools in terms of an at-home testing option.

Any students who received their test kits but have yet to complete the process can still submit them, Figora said.

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Twitter: @isabellesarraf

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