Eastern Michigan University students will need to take a COVID-19 test before going back to school.
The university is mandating that students who will be living on campus take an at-home saliva test for the coronavirus before returning to school.
Students will receive a unique link to order their own test at no charge to them, said EMU spokesman Geoffrey Larcom. The testing kits will include instructions and a link to a Zoom meeting with a representative from Vault Health, who will supervise the student taking the test to make sure it’s done correctly.
At-home, saliva-based COVID-19 tests have only recently received regulatory approval, but appear to be about as reliable as viral tests administered by nasal swab if done properly.
The test results will be processed by a third party lab, which will notify the students and the university of the results within 48-72 hours, Larcom said.
EMU students with a negative test will be allowed to check into their residence hall at a designated time, according to the university. Students who have a positive result, or who fail to complete the test, must stay home, and will be contacted by the school’s Dean of Students about next steps.
EMU is set to start classes on August 31. It’s one of several Michigan universities, including the University of Michigan, that will require students to be tested for COVID-19 before moving into on-campus housing. Other Michigan schools, including Michigan State University, have opted to conduct most classes virtually for at least the upcoming semester.