Thomas College opens COVID-19 testing site

Most students and faculty will be tested every other week.
Thomas College
Thomas College(WABI)
Published: Aug. 24, 2020 at 5:21 PM EDT
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WATERVILLE, Maine (WABI) - As students at Thomas College begin returning to campus this week, they’ll have to add a new stop on their way to classes.

A COVID-19 testing site has opened where students and faculty will follow step-by-step instructions for administering the test.

“The first step is to have everybody blow their nose to clear out any extra biological matter,” said COVID clerical assistant Hollie Kunesh. “They’ll come in. We verify a few pieces of information. We create a lab order, which we’ll put on a test tube for them. They swab the inside of their lower nostril for 10 seconds on each side, and then we send it off to the lab later that day.”

Test results come back within 24-48 hours.

Most everyone will be issued a schedule where they will visit the testing center every other week.

Athletes and students in closer contact with others will be tested on a weekly basis.

“We’re finding that this is one of the easiest tests and least invasive with the highest percentage of accurate test results,” Kunesh said. “The entire test from start to finish, we’re hoping should be around three minutes.”

Thomas College hopes this will be a streamlined process that keeps everyone on campus as safe as possible.

“We’re hoping to reestablish some of that normalcy and allow our students to come back to a campus and feel safe and feel like they’re in an environment that’s supportive of this new day and age that we find ourselves in,” Kunesh said.

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