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Loyola University Chicago is proud to partner with SHIELD Illinois to administer its saliva-based COVID-19 test method that was developed by the University of Illinois. Having a robust, community-wide surveillance testing program is critical to Loyola’s ability to continue on-campus instruction and residence.

Please review this information carefully to prepare yourself for the COVID-19 testing program at Loyola’s three Chicagoland campuses.

About the SHIELD Illinois COVID-19 Test

The saliva-based COVID-19 test is a non-invasive test that simply requires an individual to deposit a saliva sample into a provided vial at an on-campus testing site. Saliva samples are then transported to a network of lab partners who will process the sample and return results to both Loyola and the individual who was tested within 24 hours.

Loyola students, faculty, and staff can monitor their results and schedule future testing appointments using the Point N Click patient portal. We transitioned to this sophisticated software in May 2021; if you haven't registered yet for an account (or had registered for surveillance testing before May 2021), follow the link here

For more information on the science behind the saliva-based test, please click here.

What is Surveillance Testing

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), testing of asymptomatic students, faculty, and staff should increase the timeliness of outbreak detection and response by rapidly identifying and isolating COVID-19 cases that would have otherwise gone undetected without testing. The SHIELD Illinois saliva-based test is highly accurate and quick to administer, allowing Loyola to test its community widely, thereby optimizing our infection control measures.

Please note that this surveillance testing is for asymptomatic individuals. If you are experiencing symptoms of COVID-19, students should contact Dial-A-Nurse at (773) 508-8883 for instructions on visiting our Wellness Center for testing. Faculty and staff who are experiencing symptomps of COVID-19 should contact their health care provider. 

Symptomatic residential students: If you live with a roommate or in a space with a shared bathroom and show symptoms of COVID-19, you need to bring a “go bag” to your Wellness Center appointment in case you test positive. A “go bag” is a bag with essential items you might need (such as clothes and school supplies) should you test positive for COVID-19 and be required to isolate. If you test positive for COVID-19 at the Wellness Center, you will immediately be moved to an isolation residence hall and will not be able to return to your residence hall to gather essentials. 

This information does not apply to students who live on campus in a single room with a private bathroom. Those students will need to isolate in place but will not need to move locations.  

More information on isolation for students living on campus can be found on the Appointments page on the Wellness Center website and on the Positive Diagnosis Protocol Page under "What to Do if You've Tested Positive." 

Who Must Get Tested

Loyolans who plan to spend any time on Loyola property and are not vaccinated from COVID-19 will need to participate in our surveillance testing program, even you have an approved medical or religious exemption. Testing sites are conveniently located on all three Chicagoland campuses. If you have been fully vaccinated against COVID-19 and have uploaded your COVID-19 vaccination card to the Loyola Health app, you are exempt from surveillance testing once that card is approved; however, vaccinated individuals are welcome to particpate in surveillance testing anytime they wish.

Testing Frequency

For those who visit intermittently (one day per week or less), we ask that you submit for testing upon your arrival each time you visit campus. Although the results will not be available for 24 hours, positive cases will initiate contact tracing to determine any potential close contacts when on campus. 

Loyola will monitor a number of factors—campus and community positivity rates, cohort “hot spots,” etc.—that may trigger more frequent testing. If it is determined that you must submit for more frequent testing, you will be notified via email. Please visit this website frequently for updates.

The calendar week starts on Sunday morning and runs through the following Saturday night. 

Compliance

If you do not follow Loyola’s testing protocol and plan to access University property, you will lose your building access privileges or ability to access Loyola resources with your UVID. Repeated failure to comply will also be considered a violation of the LUC Community Standards and will result in a referral to your supervisor (employee) or the Office of Student Conduct and Conflict Resolution (student). Please note that if you are a residential student, access to your assigned residence hall will always be maintained.

For more information, view Loyola's Compliance Policy.

If you have questions about compliance, please email COVID-19compliance@LUC.edu.

Cost

The surveillance test will be administered for free.

Checklist Before First Test

Please review our Return to Campus Checklist for instructions on how to sign your e-consent and register your Point n Click patient portal

Scheduling Your Visit

COVID-19 testing sites are open for any Loyolan coming to our Chicagoland campuses. Schedule your testing visits in the PnC patient portal, selecting a time and date that works for you. Doing so creates a QR code in your patient account. Please have a screenshot/printout of that QR code handy to facilitate a smoother check-in process. Walk-in appointments can be accommodated as needed.  

Arriving for Your Test

Please bring your Loyola ID and wear a mask or face covering at all times. Individuals should not eat, drink (including water), chew gum, smoke, or use tobacco products within 60 minutes of providing a saliva sample. Doing any of these things within 60 minutes of providing a sample could produce an inconclusive result and require the individual to re-test.

Test Results

Test results are available after the lab results are completed, typically within 24 hours, and can be found in your patient portal.

Please review our Positive Diagnosis Protocol for more information about contact tracing, isolation, and quarantine.

Note: If you receive a positive test result via SHIELD, it will be considered positive by the University, even if you receive a negative test elsewhere.

Testing Sites and Hours

Testing locations will be available at all three campuses: Lake Shore, Health Sciences, and Water Tower. 

Effective immediately, hours for all locations are the following:
Monday, Tuesday, and Friday: 9:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.
Wednesday and Thursday: 6:00 a.m. – 9:00 p.m.
Saturday and Sunday: 12:00 p.m. - 3:00 p.m.

Lake Shore Campus:

Damen Student Center Room 244 (Sr. Jean Room) until August 15
Damen Student Center Room 216 starting August 16

Health Sciences Campus:

Cuneo Center 120 – Faculty Dining Room

Water Tower Campus:

Terry Student Center – third floor

Testing Dashboard

Please visit our COVID-19 Testing Dashboard for the latest information about the health of the Loyola community.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is surveillance testing? Why is Loyola University Chicago doing it?

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), testing of asymptomatic students, faculty, and staff should increase the timeliness of outbreak detection and response by rapidly identifying and isolating COVID-19 cases that would have otherwise gone undetected without testing. The SHIELD Illinois saliva-based test is highly accurate and quick to administer, allowing Loyola to test its community widely, thereby optimizing our infection control measures.

What are the benefits of surveillance testing?

The SHIELD Illinois saliva test is a highly accurate way of testing asymptomatic individuals. Community-wide surveillance testing gives Loyola the ability to identify positive asymptomatic individuals quickly and immediately start contact tracing to prevent the spread of the virus within the Loyola community.

Have other colleges and universities around the country used surveillance testing to slow the spread of COVID-19 successfully?

Members of the University’s emergency response teams have studied for months what works effectively at other institutions, and we’ve learned that with good execution of two key areas, cases and outbreaks of COVID-19 can be managed. Those two areas are:

  • Aggressive testing of asymptotic students, staff, and faculty
  • Compliance with mask-wearing, distancing, and other basic mitigation

What happens if I forget to sign my consent form? Can I still get tested when I come to campus?

Yes, you can still come to campus. Please come to the testing site upon arrival at campus. Your first visit to a testing site will take longer than normal, as you will need to complete your consent form and register your Point N Click account before you can be tested. Staff members can walk you through these steps at your first visit. However, we prefer that you complete your consent form now to help us anticipate and manage volumes at our testing sites.

What happens if I do not sign the consent form?

In the interest of assisting you in the event of a COVID-19 positive result and protecting others who you may have exposed, the consent form is required for Loyola to receive your test results. Without signing the consent form, you will not be tested (since we will not have access to the results).

What happens if I forget to test?

If you do not follow Loyola’s testing protocol and plan to access University property, you will lose your building access privileges. Repeated failure to comply will also be considered a violation of the LUC Community Standards and will result in a referral to your supervisor/dean (employee) or the Office of Student Conduct and Conflict Resolution (student). Please note that if you are a residential student, access to your assigned residence hall will always be maintained.

If I only visit campus periodically and don’t need to test every week, will I still be able to access campus buildings?

Any Loyola faculty, staff, or students may access campus buildings if testing protocols are followed. Testing is required for anyone who intends to be on campus, based on frequency, if they are not fully vaccinated. If you are on campus:

On Campus Frequency
Testing Frequency
Less than once a week
You should submit for testing upon arrival each time you visit campus. Although the results will not be available for 24 hours, positive cases will initiate contact tracing to determine any potential close contacts when on campus.
Once a week
You should submit for testing upon arrival each time you visit campus.
For any frequency greater than once per week
You should submit for testing twice a week.

Campus access is monitored for compliance. Non-compliance will result in a denial of building access or removal of your UVID privileges. Building access is granted to those who meet the surveillance testing protocols. If your plans change and you do come to campus, please be aware that you will not be able to access any buildings—besides the building where the testing is taking place—without testing upon arrival. If people in that particular cohort do come to campus, we’ll ask them to test upon their arrival; in those cases, they would complete the consent form. Although the results will not be available for 24 hours, positive cases will initiate contact tracing to determine any potential close contacts when on campus.

How long does the testing process take? Is it a big hassle?

The duration of the testing process from start to finish takes roughly five minutes.

Will the saliva test cost me anything?

No, testing will be free for all Loyola students, faculty, and staff (as stated on the COVID-19 Testing Program website). The consent form is intended to be broad, capturing other potential instances of COVID-19 diagnostic testing that may be required in the treatment of an individual (most applicable to students who visit the Wellness Center). This would not apply to faculty and staff as they do not receive treatment at the Wellness Center. 

I’ve received a positive result for COVID-19 within the last 90 days, and the CDC recommends I don’t take another test until that 90-day window is over. Will my campus access be restricted during this time?

People who have tested positive should not re-test for 90 days from the date of their positive test. You should provide documentation of your positive test to COVID-19Report@luc.edu

I’ve previously tested positive for COVID-19 and may have protective antibodies. Do I need to participate in surveillance testing?

Yes, people with antibodies should still be tested. The CDC does not recommend any changes in behavior for persons who have been infected with COVID-19 since the science community doesn’t yet know what level of antibodies/cell-mediated immunity is protective and for how long.

I have been administered a COVID-19 vaccine. Do I need to participate in surveillance testing?

Starting on Sunday, May 23, you can stop participating in our COVID-19 surveillance testing program if you are fully vaccinated (two weeks past your second dose) and your vaccine record is uploaded to and approved in the Loyola Health function of the Loyola mobile app. You’ll know your card is approved when the vaccine bar in your app turns green. However, vaccinated individuals are welcome to particpate in surveillance testing at any time.

Do I need to pay for parking if I am only coming to campus to get tested?

While we are not requiring you to come to campus just for testing, you are welcome to. During the semester, normal parking rates will apply. Please visit the Campus Transportation website for more details. At both the Fordham Garage and the Main Parking Structure, the first 30 minutes of parking are free when you pull a daily parking ticket.

I’m not planning to come to campus for any reason other than testing. Is that allowed?

Yes, you are welcome to visit campus for testing, even if you have no plans to access campus buildings for any other reason. Some institutions call this “ad hoc testing.”

I’m under 18. What am I supposed to do?

Any students under 18 years of age should have their parents electronically sign the e-consent form.

I'm a new employee. How do I sign up for surveillance testing?

All employees are required to get the COVID-19 vaccine and upload your vaccine record in the Health App no later than September 21, 2021. For instructions on how to upload your vaccine record, please visit our Vaccine Information website. You may upload your vaccine card after you receive your Loyola University ID (UVID).

Any employee who does not yet have an uploaded and approved vaccine record on file (or has not received a medical or religious exemption) is required to participate in surveillance testing. Please visit one of our conveniently located testing sites listed above and inform the testing site staff that you need to create your account with Point & Click as a new employee. A testing employee will be able to assist you in creating your account.