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North Central College Starts New Saliva-Based COVID Testing

North Central College is starting 2021 with a new partnership in the fight against COVID-19, and anew saliva base COVID test.

“So North Central College has partnered with Shield Illinois to implement their saliva based RTPCR test on our campus. This is a similar test to what we were doing before, but the difference is how the sample is collected,” said Dr. Marci J. Swede, Dean of School of Education and Health Professions at North Central College.

Cutting Edge Saliva Based Test

This new test collects a saliva sample, as opposed to the previous test, which used a nasal swab.

The cutting edge saliva test was developed by Shield Illinois, an outgrowth from the University of Illinois The group is supplying the tests, labs and logistical support to their community partners.

The new test is an important part of NCC’s stop the spread initiative, and it’s being implemented campus-wide on staff and students, to help do just that. North Central College students must agree to be subject to random-testing samples, with some individuals like student athletes and campus security workers screened weekly. Students must also show proof of a negative COVID test before returning to school.

NCC Taking the Time to Test

“Testing allows us to very quickly respond to anybody who may be positive by isolating or quarantining them. Through contact-tracing, finding out who their close contacts are in order to quarantine them and it gives us a sense of how well our stop-the-spread measures are doing.” said Dr. Marci J. Swede, Dean of School of Education and Health Professions at North Central College.

Tests are usually sent out and received back within 24 to 48 hours.

Naperville News 17’s Ryan Skryd reports.


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