UoB have published their plans for students to return home for Christmas

Students testing negative will have a window from 3-9 December to return home

Many students since their return to university in September have been wondering whether they will be able to return home to be with their families during the Christmas period. In an email sent to students today it outlined UoB’s plans to help students return home including the potential prospect of mass testing.

The university has also made the decision to make 4 December the final day for online teaching and students will be supported to return home during 3-9 December.

The university is hoping to gain access to the new Lateral Flow Device testing which would give results within the hour. However, students which test positive would have to self-isolate for 10 days before they can return home.

The email set out “we are following Government guidance and working with our own world-leading scientists to develop a plan to support you to return home at the end of term in a way that helps to minimise the risk of transmitting Covid to family and friends.”

“In the week commencing Monday 7 December (the last week of teaching) we will move the vast majority of taught sessions online.   The Government has stated that some limited clinical placements can continue after 9 December and if this applies to you, additional information will be provided from your School or course team.”

The university is hoping mass testing will help students return safely. “You may have heard in the media about the new Lateral Flow Device testing of students. We are applying to the Government to be part of this national programme and expect to hear next week whether we will be able to establish a rapid testing facility on campus to offer ‘lateral flow’ tests to our students.”

The university have high hopes they will be accepted onto the programme. “We already have a strong track record in successfully running a laboratory for existing Covid testing and are confident of being accepted onto this new programme.”

“You will be able to book a slot to take a ‘lateral flow’ test, which can give results within an hour, enabling students who test negative to travel home immediately (and a maximum of 24 hours after the test).  Students who test positive would then take a standard Covid test to confirm the result and would be supported to self-isolate for 10 days before returning home if this test is positive,” the email says.

Guidance and advice for students at the university concerned about the current coronavirus outbreak can be found here.

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