PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — The University of Rhode Island is requiring all students to get tested for the coronavirus and is setting up two testing locations on campus.
The mandatory testing announced Monday that applies to asymptomatic students who live on and off campus “is to assess the overall health of the entire student body at the university and establish a baseline data set to measure population health for the remainder of the fall semester," the school said in a statement.
Students with coronavirus symptoms should call university health services.
The school had 66 positive tests between Sept. 28 and Sunday, but remains within the positivity rate recommended by the state and the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Students will receive an email to be tested either at the Memorial Union Atriums or the Ryan Center parking lot.
Students who fail to get a test will be referred to the Dean of Students office, the statement said.
The goal is to continue in-person learning through Thanksgiving, the school said.
Other colleges in the state, including Providence College and Johnson & Wales University, moved to remote only learning after outbreaks among students.
The Rhode Island Department of Health reported 145 more confirmed cases of the coronavirus and four more virus-related deaths on Tuesday.
The new cases were out of nearly 7,200 tests, a positivity rate of about 2%.
The seven-day rolling average of the positivity rate in Rhode Island is holding steady at about 1.5% as of Monday, according to the Johns Hopkins University Center for Systems Science and Engineering.
But the seven-day rolling average of daily new cases in the state has risen over the past two weeks from almost 115 on Sept. 21 to more than 142 as of Monday, according to Johns Hopkins.
The state has now had almost 25,600 confirmed cases and 1,125 fatalities.
The number of people in the state's hospitals with the disease was 93 as of Sunday, the most recent day for which the information was available, down slightly from the previous day. Of those, eight were in intensive care.
PEN MAKER CLOSURE
A Rhode Island company that makes promotional pens, including the pen used by U.S. Rep. Nancy Pelosi to sign the articles of impeachment against President Donald Trump, is closing because orders have declined steeply as trade shows, conventions and other events were canceled because of the pandemic.
Garland Writing Instruments in Coventry, founded in 1927, is closing at the end of the month and putting its assets — including the name — up for sale, owner Richard Becker told WPRO radio Tuesday.
The company has also had trouble finding components used to make the face shields added to its product line to make up for a drop in pen sales.
The company will continue to fill its orders, he said.
About a dozen remaining employees will lose their jobs, Becker said.