ELIZABETH CITY, N.C. (WAVY) — Elizabeth City State University will now be able to offer free coronavirus testing for the northeastern North Carolina community after receiving a $1 million grant.
Northeast North Carolina has faced higher rates of the coronavirus compared to many other areas of the states, especially in Bertie, Halifax and Northampton counties. ECSU says it’s focusing on testing for racial and ethnic minorities, and socially vulnerable and rural communities.
The grant from the N.C. Policy Collaboratory at UNC-Chapel Hill will also go toward contact tracing and marketing to raise awareness about the virus, ECSU officials said in a press release. ECSU also received funding for its coronavirus response in July.
“ECSU is now able to provide a critical service to the community,” said Dr. Kuldeep Rawat, dean of the School of Science, Aviation, Health and Technology, and project lead. “We will be providing free COVID-19 testing and assisting with contact tracing in an effort to minimize the spread of the virus.”
Testing will begin on Monday, October 19, and those in the community who want to get tested will have to complete and submit an online form by Friday, October 16. There will also be free testing for ECSU students and employees.
ECSU faculty and staff, as well as three biology graduate students have been trained to administer the tests, and 26 undergraduate students will help with the contact tracing.
For more on ECSU’s coronavirus response, click here.
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