Free Asymptomatic Testing FAQs
What kind of test is it?
The COVID-19 test is a PCR test that requires swabbing both nostrils with a Q-tip-like swab.
How do I access my results?
Visit the secure testing site to create an account and see your results.
When will I get my results?
Most test results will be available within 24 hours.
How do I read the results of my test? Where does it show that it was a PCR test?
When you login and click on your results, click on the blue “COVID-19 (SARS-CoV-2)”. From that page, you can click on the PDF for full details.
How long will the asymptomatic testing be offered?
The university will provide asymptomatic testing through the spring 2021 semester.
Update on New COVID-19 Variants
There has been a lot of information published recently about multiple variants of the virus that causes COVID-19. These have been documented in the United States and globally. Information about the characteristics of these variants is rapidly emerging. As new information becomes available, the CDC will provide updates.
- In the United Kingdom (UK), a new variant called B.1.1.7 has emerged with an unusually large number of mutations. This variant spreads more easily and quickly than other variants. This variant was first detected in September 2020 and is now highly prevalent in London and southeast England. It has since been detected in numerous countries around the world, including the United States and Canada. This strain has been found in at least 21 states, but not Mississippi as of this time.
- In South Africa, another variant called 1.351 has also emerged. This variant, originally detected in early October, shares some mutations with the variant detected in the UK. There have been cases caused by this variant outside of South Africa, but it has not been detected in the US.
- In Brazil, a variant called P.1 emerged and was identified in four travelers from Brazil who were tested during routine screening at Haneda airport outside Tokyo, Japan. This variant contains a set of additional mutations that may affect its ability to be recognized by antibodies. This variant was recently detected in Minnesota, where the state’s health department said it was found in a Minnesota resident who had recently traveled to Brazil.
What does this mean:
- Viruses constantly change through mutation, and new variants of a virus are expected to occur over time. These variants of SARS-CoV-2 seem to spread more quickly. Research is ongoing to determine if they are more virulent meaning that they cause more severe illness or are evasive to antibody detection.
What should I do:
- This is a rapidly evolving situation that is being monitored closely by public health officials and government agencies. The best strategy to stop the coronavirus from mutating and developing new variants is by slowing down the transmission of this virus. Ongoing prevention practices such as the 5 W’s will help slow the transmission of COVID-19:
- Wear masks
- Wash hands
- Watch your distance
- Wait to gather
- When it’s your turn, get vaccinated.
Numerous, well-conducted studies for both of the currently available vaccines have been performed by the world’s leading health experts over the last several months. The vaccines are effective at preventing symptomatic laboratory-confirmed COVID-19 among persons without previous SARS-CoV-2 infection, with Pfizer reporting 95% effectiveness and Moderna 94.1% effectiveness
International Restrictions and Travel Guidelines
The Office of Global Engagement is providing up-to-date information about university travel including traveler requirements and study abroad planning by country.
New Blog: A Deeper Dive Into Vaccines
Dr. Jean Gispen, staff physician with Employee Health, has shared a new blog with additional information about the COVID-19 vaccine including allergic reactions and guidance for pregnant and nursing women.
Vaccine Resource: Mythbusters
Be sure to check out the COVID-19 Mythbusters document to learn more about the vaccine.
University COVID-19-related News Stories
- UM Shares Update on Commencement Ceremonies for Classes of 2020, 2021
- Task Force Preparing for Campuswide COVID-19 Vaccinations
- Study: Diabetes, COVID-19 combo riskier for Blacks, Hispanics
Graduate Writing Center
The Graduate Writing Center is open for Spring 2021 and has appointments available Sunday through Friday. Both Live-chat and Correspondence appointments will be offered.
Join a Graduate Writing Group
The Graduate Writing Center is forming Graduate Writing Groups for the Spring 2021 semester. Groups are open to any graduate student in any program and are peer-led, non-instructional writing groups intended to help graduate students develop their writing skills for scholarship and publication. All Spring 2021 groups will meet virtually. Email firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
ASB 365 will take place on Wednesday, Feb. 3, 11 a.m.–2 p.m. at the Union Plaza.
Registration for Intramural Sports
Registration for Spring 2021 Intramural Sports are now available. Click here to see the schedule with registration deadlines. Register on the OleMissCR App or at the Intramural Sports site.
Safe Ride will begin for the Spring 2021 semester on Feb. 4. Service will be Thursday, Friday and Saturday from 7 p.m.–midnight.
Faculty and Staff
If an Employee or Student Discloses They Have Tested Positive for COVID-19
If an employee or student discloses they tested positive for COVID-19, resides with someone who tested positive, or has been within 6 feet or less of someone who did, you should follow these steps.
- If on campus, the employee or student should be discretely separated from others and sent home. If not on campus, the individual should be advised to stay at home.
- All employees or students should be asked to identify 1) any persons in our university community with whom they had contact with recently before the onset of symptoms, and 2) any areas of campus they visited during that time.
- As you engage the student or employee, show empathy but do not provide medical advice. Please advise the student or employee that they may contact the physicians at University Health Services (https://healthcenter.olemiss.edu/) for questions, including guidance on treatment and preventive measures to minimize the risk of infection to others. The telephone number for Student Health is 662-915-7274. The telephone number for Employee Health is 662-915-6550.
- Note that all students must report positive tests to Student Health and employees must report positive tests to Employee Health, regardless of where the test was performed.
- After speaking to the student or employee, please contact the physicians at Student or Employee Health. The physicians will determine what additional precautions may be warranted, including closing an area and following up with MSDH. You should also alert Facilities Management at 662-915-7003 to determine whether any area of campus must be cleaned or disinfected.
The university will continue to observe 6-feet social distancing in the classrooms with all individuals wearing masks. Also, students and faculty are encouraged to wipe down surfaces that are touched during class sessions. Additional information can be found here: (https://keepteaching.olemiss.edu/faq/).
If You See Someone Not Following Protocols
The university has C-19 Ambassadors for the spring semester in buildings to remind people of the protocols and the need to wear masks in indoor spaces and outdoors when you cannot be 6 feet from others. If you find someone not following the protocols, you can report that incident to Student Conduct (https://coronavirus.olemiss.edu/compliance/) if it is a student or the appropriate dean (if it is a faculty or staff member). Student Conduct reports can be filed here: https://conflictresolution.olemiss.edu/form/
When to Wear a Face Mask or Cloth Face Covering
Wear a face mask or cloth face covering at all times while in a shared work space/room. Face masks/cloth coverings are required outdoors when people are within 6 feet of another person.
Other Things To Know
CDC Resource: Requirement for Proof of Negative COVID-19 Test or Recovery from COVID-19 for All Air Passengers Arriving in the United States
Oxford Film Festival announces ambitious hybrid film festival presentation (March 24-28, April 1-30)
On the Lighter Side
- How can families plan a safer spring break? (National Geographic)
- Flaming Lips stage unique ‘space bubble’ concert in Oklahoma (BBC)
- Time-lapse video of fireflies dancing under vibrant skies at twilight in Brazil’s Pantanal region (National Geographic Instagram)
- Olive and Mabel: Supply chain challenges
- UM Vaccine Information Page
- UM COVID-19 Daily Symptom Checker
- UM confirmed COVID-19 cases among employees and students
- UM COVID-19 Dashboard
- MSDH Free COVID-19 Testing for faculty, staff and students
- Information for Students and Families
- Information for Faculty
- Information for Staff
- SAA-sponsored Student Activities Around Campus
- Frequently Asked Questions
- City of Oxford Upcoming Events
Studies and surveys
- The university is collaborating with researchers at Columbia University on a national College Student COVID-19 Impact Survey to understand how the pandemic has affected undergraduate students’ health and decisions-making. For more information and to take the online survey: https://www.collegecovid19impactstudy.com/