University of East Anglia staff and students to be tested for coronavirus

Prof Dylan Edwards, pro-vice-chancellor of the University of East Anglia's faculty of medicine and h

Prof Dylan Edwards, pro-vice-chancellor of the University of East Anglia's faculty of medicine and health studies. Picture: Denise Bradley - Credit: Archant 2013

Students and staff at the University of East Anglia will be tested for coronavirus as people return to their studies after lockdown.

The UEA, on the edge of Norwich, plans on testing all undergraduate, postgraduate taught and postgraduate research students as well as staff who are regularly work on campus in the early weeks of the autumn term.

The university said the enhanced testing was aimed at preventing the silent spread of the virus and to provide reassurance to students, staff and the Norwich community.

Dylan Edwards, pro-vice-chancellor for the faculty of medicine and health sciences, said: “Testing is essential in helping to prevent the silent spread of the virus.

“We are offering, and strongly recommending, that staff and students do a test and that they follow our covid-secure measures.


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“We believe this approach will help UEA to identify, as early as possible, any cases of coronavirus. This will help to protect the UEA community and the people of Norwich.

“We would be looking for ways to increase the testing of all people on campus as part of the extension of the successful testing pilot with the Earlham Institute, which completed earlier this summer.

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“This could see pooling testing or sentinel testing on a more regular basis.”

MORE: Scientists who want to test everyone in Norwich for coronavirus hail pilot scheme successTesting will be available to people who do not have symptoms and it is built on a successful pilot carried out at the Earlham Institute on the Norwich Research Park, near the university, in the summer.

These tests captured 3000 samples from around 800 Norwich Research Park staff and students.

All samples were dropped off at dedicated collection points and analysed in secure facilities at the Earlham Institute and the majority of samples were processed within 24 hours, with the fastest results returned to participants nine hours after dropping the sample off.

No positive samples from the nose and throat swabs were detected.

The health secretary Matt Hancock warned the UK could face a second spike of in coronavirus cases if young people do not follow social distancing rules.

A third of all cases in England last week were people aged between 20 and 29.

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