VERMILLION, S.D. – The University of South Dakota has launched a “Know Before You Go” campaign encouraging students to get tested for COVID-19 prior to the winter break.
With funding from the South Dakota Department of Health, USD offers free COVID-19 testing to students, faculty and staff through the USD Sentinel Testing program. The program has supported testing for up to 100 asymptomatic volunteers each week and is now greatly increasing the number of tests available to the USD community.
As the winter break approaches, USD is promoting this testing option as a way to reduce the spread of COVID-19 during the holidays. The “Know Before You Go” campaign emphasizes that students can help protect the health and safety of their friends, family and community members by getting tested and isolating if their tests return positive.
“We understand that students want to spend the holidays with their families, and we want them to be as safe as possible when they do so,” said Tim Ridgway, M.D., vice president for health affairs and dean of the Sanford School of Medicine. “Getting tested prior to the winter break is an important step students can take to assess their health and make more informed decisions about their holiday plans. We want to protect our friends and family, and this is one of the best ways to do that.”
USD is also asking students to continue taking safety precautions – such as wearing face coverings when around others – and avoid social gatherings that could put them at risk in the weeks leading up to the winter break.
Drive-thru testing through the USD Sentinel Testing program is available from 2-3:30 p.m. on Tuesdays and Wednesdays in November. Students, faculty and staff interested in getting tested should report to Sanford Vermillion drive-thru testing at the white tent on Jane Street. Additional opportunities to get tested in the area are now available, as well. Hy-Vee offers testing by appointment. In addition, there will be drive-thru mass testing events in Yankton and other cities across the state; visit covid.sd.gov/testing.aspx for more information.
Visit usd.edu/knowbeforeyougo for more information.