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This week’s edition of the Return to Grounds Update is dedicated to the scientists and researchers who are putting the knowledge, expertise, technology, and resources of this University to work keeping members of this community safe and our semester on track.

When the pandemic first arose and testing supplies were scarce, scientists at UVA Health responded by developing their own. When labs across the Commonwealth saw shortages of swabs that are essential to COVID-19 testing, UVA scientists designed a new one and began distributing it to benefit the local community and people across Virginia.

When the University needed every tool available to track the prevalence of the virus on Grounds, UVA scientists and facilities management staff deployed cutting-edge wastewater technology to help detect cases earlier, guide decisions about testing, and prevent the spread of the virus on Grounds. And as we announced just this week, UVA researchers rolled out a new saliva screening program, another innovative approach that will expand the University’s testing capacity and provide results quickly. Every day researchers, physicians, and UVA leaders meet to assess testing results, monitor isolation and quarantine space, track regional metrics, consider mitigation measures, and make recommendations about how we can limit the spread of the virus.

As we have said many times, this virus is relentless and difficult to predict. However, thanks to hard working people across this university, we are constantly improving and expanding our ability to prevent, detect, and respond to COVID-19 within the UVA community and to use those advancements for the good of the Charlottesville/Albemarle region and the people of Virginia.

When we talk about being a great and good University, this is what we mean. Striving for excellence and using the results to serve others. So, to the scientists and researchers who are working harder than ever to keep people safe and make this semester a success, we say thank you. And to all the people working in every corner of the University to advance UVA’s mission while keeping each other safe, we thank you as well. This isn’t easy and we have a lot more work to do, but your efforts are making a difference and we should all be proud of that.

Liz Magill

J.J. Davis
Chief Operating Officer
New Saliva Testing for Students
This week, UVA announced a new saliva testing program that will allow the University to expand prevalence testing for students. The program begins tomorrow, for more information visit UVA Today.
Hoos Health Check and COVIDWISE
Everyone is required to use Hoos Health Check each day they come to Grounds. Have questions? Visit the FAQs. Additionally, University community members are encouraged to download and use COVIDWISE, the Virginia Department of Health’s exposure notification app.
New Graphic Explains Isolation and Quarantine Timelines
Student Health and Wellness has produced this infographic, which details some common isolation and quarantine scenarios. Please note that these timelines are examples, and actual isolation and quarantine time periods will vary based on individual circumstances determined by your health care provider and public health officials.
What’s Included in UVA’s Virus Contingency Planning
Leaders managing UVA’s response to the coronavirus have approved a short-term set of restrictions on University operations that could be implemented if additional measures become necessary to slow the spread of COVID-19. Find details at UVA Today.
Dependent Care Resources
There are many dependent care resources available to employees from back-up care to school and tutoring support due to increasing need. UVA HR has provided detailed information on all of these resources on the Dependent Care webpage.
Employee Flu Shot Update
The UVA flu shot clinic program is altered this year due to the pandemic, but employees and team members still have easy access to getting shots. See the HR flu shot webpage for details including locations and cost coverage.
Benefits Expo Update
The Benefits and Well-Being Expo for Open Enrollment will be held virtually this year due to social distance requirements and to keep you safe. So it’s convenient for employees’ schedules, the Expo will be held for a full two weeks during Open Enrollment from Oct 5-16. Learn more on the Virtual Benefits & Well-Being Expo webpage.
COVID Regulations Apply in Tents
The tents located across Grounds, all equipped with WiFi, are a great place to study or attend virtual classes. Whatever the hour, students are reminded to follow all current COVID regulations while in a tent: wear a mask, maintain physical distance, and gather in groups of five or less. For information about WiFi outdoors, including in tents, please visit the ITS website.
Safe and Fun Student Activities
IM-Rec Sports is planning fun student activities for the rest of the semester beginning with a Pool Movie Night next Wednesday, Oct. 7. Sign up, bring a friend or meet a new one, grab a float, and relax in front of the big screen. Check out the IM-Rec website for details.
Intramural Sports Registration
Register now for Intramurals including kickball, sand volleyball, tennis, cornhole, Spikeball, soccer skills, and a Punt, Pass, Kick competition. Stay active and have fun!
Saliva Testing Program Begins This Week, Providing More Rapid Screening
The rapid tests, which can provide results within hours, add another tool for monitoring and limiting the spread of COVID-19 on Grounds. MORE >
UVA Weekly: Quarantine Procedures and One Team’s Pandemic Project
Hear from President Jim Ryan, and learn about wastewater testing, quarantine procedures and how UVA’s field hockey team is helping foster animals. MORE >


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