UO expanding COVID-19 testing to Lane County community

Student at testing center

The University of Oregon COVID-19 Monitoring and Assessment Program is expanding its asymptomatic COVID-19 testing capacity to include UO community members and Lane County residents, with a series of upcoming testing events open to adult residents who are not experiencing COVID-19 symptoms.

“Many people infected with COVID-19 have no symptoms or have very mild symptoms. One strategy to identify such persons is surveillance testing via asymptomatic testing events,” said Dr. Patrick Luedtke, Lane County’s senior public health officer. “Our county is quite fortunate that the University of Oregon has leveraged its talent and resources to create a sophisticated, high-volume, federally certified COVID laboratory and has opted to use it for COVID surveillance. Participating in an asymptomatic testing event will help keep individuals, families and our broader community safe.”    

The tests use a self-collected, shallow nasal swab, not the more invasive deep nasal swab used in health care settings. The free testing is offered through the UO’s Monitoring and Assessment Program, a public health program with the goal of expanding local testing capacity and informing public agency responses to the COVID-19 pandemic. The procedures the program is using have been authorized for use by the FDA and are among the gold standards in the field for testing and detecting the virus.

Participants must be 18 years of age or older, wear a mask and present some form of identification. All participants must preregister through the testing program registration portal.

A limited number of dedicated testing appointments are available on a first-come, first-served basis on the following dates:

  • Monday, Nov. 23,  8 a.m.-12:30 p.m. and 1:30 p.m.-6 p.m.
  • Tuesday, Nov. 24  8 a.m.-12:30 p.m.

Sign-up closes at 5 p.m. the day before each session or when all testing slots are full, whichever comes first. Additional testing opportunities will be made available in December.

Minimal time is needed for the testing process itself. While there may be some wait time, lines are expected to move quickly and participants should only need 15-30 minutes to complete the process from arrival to departure. More information about sample collection and the testing process is available on the UO coronavirus website.

It’s important to note that people who belive they have been exposed to or are experiencing symptoms of COVID-19 should contact their medical provider for more immediate diagnostic testing and treatment. Symptomatic individuals should not go to a UO testing event.

Testing takes place at the UO campus at Matthew Knight Arena.

Those who test positive for COVID-19 will be notified of the results by a telephone call within four days after the test. Those who consent to receive a negative result via secure email will receive results within four business days. Those who elect to receive a negative result by U.S. Postal Service will get results postmarked within four business days, but the university cannot guarantee a timeline for delivery. People will have the opportunity to indicate which they prefer when they fill out the preregistration form.

More information about sample collection and the testing process is available on the UO coronavirus website.