COVID-19 Campus Testing

University of Arizona

COVID-19 Testing

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The University offers free, convenient COVID-19 testing options for all students, employees and designated campus colleagues (DCCs) on the Tucson campus and other Arizona locations.

If you are experiencing symptoms: please contact Campus Health or your healthcare provider.  You may also use the Campus Health Cats TakeAway Testing location.


Getting Started: Registration

  • Visit Wildcat OneStop (onestop.wellcheck.arizona.edu) and log in with your NetID to view your testing registration status.

  • If there is a red X next to the test type(s) you are eligible for, click the “Register for a test” button and follow the prompts.

  • Once registered, a green check mark will replace the red X on your Wildcat OneStop.

  • Success! You are now able to check in at the test site with your QR code or participate in Cats TakeAway Testing.

Register for Testing


Testing Options

On-Site Testing 

Test Types: PCR and Rapid Antigen

Registration and appointments: Required. Same-day appointments usually available. 

Location & hours: Tucson campus, Student Union - Catalina Room, Monday - Friday, 7:30am - 3pm. (Closed weekends & holidays.)

Confirm your registration and schedule your test via Wildcat OneStop (requires NetID). If you've already registered, you may schedule directly: testing.wellcheck.arizona.edu/appointments

Wildcat OneStop

Cats TakeAway Testing 

Test Type: PCR

Registration: Required.

Locations: Tucson Campus, Phoenix Biomedical Campus, Oro Valley, Sierra Vista, Yuma

Pick up a test kit from a TakeAway Testing location, link your sample collection tube with your NetID online, find an appropriate place to collect your sample, and drop it off.

View TakeAway instructions and locations


Rapid Antigen and PCR Tests

Rapid Antigen (nasal swab) Testing

About the test:  An antigen test is designed for rapid detection of the virus that causes COVID-19. Antigen tests are very specific for the virus but are not as sensitive as PCR tests. Negative results may need to be confirmed with a PCR test.

Results: Usually available within 2 hours

How to Do a Rapid Antigen (Nasal Swab) Test (TikTok)

PCR (saline gargle) Testing

About the test: A real-time polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) test is a molecular diagnostic testing technique that detects the genetic material from the virus. 

Results: Usually within 2 business days (Tucson). Results for Friday tests are usually available on Monday afternoon. *Results may be delayed due to university/holiday closures.

Note Do not eat, drink, use mouthwash, brush your teeth, chew gum, smoke, or vape for 30 minutes before your PCR (saline gargle) test.

How to Do a PCR (Saline Gargle) Test (TikTok)


Student Testing Incentives

Star Rewards Program

All students can earn star rewards for completing COVID-19 testing (and receiving a COVID-19 vaccine)! 

Earn Rewards for COVID-19 Testing: Fall 2021 Semester
  • Test at least once per week four times to earn one Star Reward - a $5 value that can be added to your CatCard.

  • Claim your Star Rewards in Wildcat OneStop

  • Redeem your Star Rewards at the Student Unions & BookStores (selected vendors).

  • Program runs Sept. 25 - Dec. 22, 2021 

Image
graphic of the rewards logo for testing incentives

Follow these instructions to claim your reward:

  1. Log into Wildcat OneStop.

  2. Below your photo, look for the star icon. On the star, you will see a red circle with the number of stars you have earned (4 stars = 1 Star Reward). You earn 1 stars for each weekly test you take.

  3. If you have 4 or more stars, click the green button that says “Claim” to receive your reward.

  4. After you have claimed your reward, $5 will be added to your CatCard. Your reward will be ready to spend once you receive a confirmation email, which may take up to an hour.

  5. Return to step 3 to claim a $5 reward for each set of 4 stars (4 stars = 1 Star Reward). Once claimed, reward funds have no expiration date.

Star Reward funds are eligible for redemption at: 

UArizona BookStores

Student Union Memorial Center

  • Arizona Market, Chick-fil-A, Core, Einstein Bros Bagels, IQ Fresh, Nrich Urban Market, On Deck Deli, Starbucks @ Bookstore

Global Center

  • Core+, Mas Tacos, Nrich Urban Market Express, Park Avenue Market, The Den

‘85 North

Highland Market

To order with Grubhub, see redemption instructions.


Antibody Testing

An antibody test determines whether you have developed an immune response against COVID-19 from infection or vaccination. An antibody test is not used to diagnose an active infection.

The University of Arizona's antibody test is part of an IRB-approved research study.

LEARN MORE ABOUT ANTIBODY TESTING

 


Off-Campus Testing (Pima County)

The Pima County Health Department (PCHD) offers COVID-19 Testing. View the schedule

*University of Arizona students and employees are encouraged to test on campus.


Frequently Asked Questions

Students, Employees & DCCs

Test All Test Smart offers PCR testing for international travel at the Student Union - Catalina Room. PCR testing registration and a scheduled appointment are required. 

When scheduling your test, follow these instructions for your sample to be flagged as “International Travel” for the lab. 

  1. Select “PAC-12/International Travel/Exemption PCR Testing”
  2. Choose the date and time for your appointment
  3. Enter your name and email address
  4. From the drop down menus, select your campus affiliation and your test type (International Travel)
  5. When you check in at the test site, inform the staff you are testing for travel.

PCR test results are usually available within 2 business days. In many cases, if you test before 9 am, same-day results may be available. Test results are not provided on weekends. Results for tests taken on Friday are usually available Monday afternoon.

Note: Although Test All Test Smart is able to provide a general results delivery window and makes every effort to deliver timely results, we cannot guarantee this test will satisfy your travel requirements or that results will be delivered during the timeframe you require. If you need test results urgently or by a specific date, you may want to consider scheduling an additional, backup test, as sometimes samples are rejected.

It is your responsibility to determine if the Test All Test Smart COVID-19 PCR test fulfills your specific international or domestic travel requirements and schedule accordingly.  

Active DCCs should complete the Designated Campus Colleague COVID Test Request. Once approved, active DCCs may proceed with testing registration and scheduling.

Note: Eligibility for testing does not guarantee that testing will be available at the DCC’s location.

DCCs are invited to get an antibody test through the IRB-approved statewide antibody testing research study. See the Antibody Testing page for more information.

Dorm residents are eligible for On-Site and TakeAway Testing.

In the event of a significant COVID-19 outbreak in a shared student housing setting, the University may require dorm (campus housing) residents and/or employees to comply with COVID-19 testing. Prior to implementing this requirement, the University will receive approval from the Arizona Department of Health Services.  

Please follow the COVID-19 Exposure Protocol.

If you are symptomatic, stay isolated and contact Campus Health or their healthcare provider. You may also use the Campus Health TakeAway Testing location.

If you test positive for COVID-19 and are instructed to isolate, you must isolate for the full 10 days, either in an isolation dorm or off-campus. Once you receive a positive COVID-19 test result, you cannot test out of isolation early and, if you live on campus, you will not be permitted to return to your on-campus residence until isolation is complete.

COVID-19 Virus Testing

The university currently uses two types of tests that diagnose whether an individual is currently infected with the COVID-19 virus:

PCR (saline gargle) test, considered the gold standard for detecting an active COVID-19 infection but takes time to produce results.

Rapid Antigen (nasal swab) test produces results more quickly than a PCR test but also has a higher chance of producing a false negative result.

COVID-19 virus tests only detect active infections of the virus.  An antibody test determines whether you have developed an immune response against past COVID-19 infection or vaccination. An antibody test is not used to diagnose an active infection.

Even if you don’t have symptoms of COVID-19, there’s a chance that you have been exposed and have the virus, but just not know it. We offer voluntary, free, and convenient COVID-19 testing options on the Tucson campus and other Arizona locations.

Per the CDC, there are no confirmed reports to date of a person being reinfected with COVID-19 within 3 months of initial infection. Current data shows that a person who has recovered from COVID-19 may have low levels of virus in their bodies for up to 3 months after diagnosis. This means that if the person who has recovered from COVID-19 is retested within 3 months of initial infection, they may continue to have a positive test result, even though they are not spreading COVID-19.

The University of Arizona has limited capacity for each test type. Through dual testing (PCR and antigen on the same patient) we have shown good concordance of results for actively infected individuals.

Yes. Although antigen tests have more false negatives when used in the asymptomatic population, antigen tests appear to detect contagious individuals at a very high rate. Contagious individuals are the most likely to spread COVID-19.

The antigen test detects proteins (known as antigens) on the surface of the virus and is able to detect contagious individuals at a high rate. However, the antigen test is not as sensitive as the PCR test, which is able to detect extremely low levels of viral genetic material.

A positive antigen test result is highly accurate, but a negative antigen result does not rule out infection (which could be detected by PCR). Read more about the two types of diagnostic testing.

While there is no test with zero risk, the risk of transmission at the PCR (saline gargle) test sites is very low. Test takers cover their mouths and noses with their face coverings while swishing and gargling, all of the test takers are asymptomatic and the vast majority of the test takers are not infected (typically 97-99%).

Registration & Results

Participants in the Test All Test Smart COVID-19 testing must sign a consent and authorization for the release of information. Copies of the forms are provided at the links below for your reference.

Students and employees who are tested at Campus Health will sign separate consents and authorization paperwork.

Test All Test Smart:

In addition to the uses described in the consent and authorization forms (see question above), aggregated and/or de-identified testing result data may be used, under certain scenarios, by university personnel responsible for COVID-19 planning, mitigation, and public health safety duties. Such uses include, but are not limited to, campus health monitoring, identifying potential outbreaks, and evaluating appropriate mitigation measures.

Campus Health:

For testing and patient services provided by Campus Health, in accordance with applicable state and federal laws, patients will be provided with Campus Health Service’s notice of privacy practices.

COVID-19 test results from the Test All Test Smart initiative are stored in HIPAA-compliant systems with the university's strongest security and monitoring efforts in place.

This system must adhere to robust risk-informed auditing and reporting procedures as required by University policy and standards, “Information System Audit, Accountability, and Activity Review Policy,” and ISO-1100-S1 “Logging and Monitoring Standard.” Additionally, this enterprise system undergoes an annual risk assessment signed off by the Chief Information Security Officer to ensure continued attention to appropriate security controls.

Access controls are in place to ensure that only approved individuals, as required for test delivery and operations or according to individual authorizations, have access to the data. For additional information about the University of Arizona’s information security and privacy policies and procedures, please visit the University Information Security and Privacy page.

You will receive an email with a link to log in to the test results portal when your results are ready. If you elected to receive text messages during the registration process, you will also receive a text.  If you were tested at Campus Health, visit their patient portal for your results.

On-Site PCR testing (Tucson): Usually available within 2 business days. Results for tests taken on Fridays are usually available by Monday afternoon. 

On-Site Rapid Antigen testing (Tucson): Usually available within 2 hours.

TakeAway Testing (Tucson): Usually available within 2 business days after your sample is deposited at the drop-off station. For samples dropped off Friday, Saturday, or Sunday most results will be available on Monday afternoon.

TakeAway Testing (Arizona locations): Usually available within 3 business days.

TakeAway Testing Locations