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Rapid testing for coronavirus to be trialled in higher education

NETHERLANDS. The lockdown will last at least three more weeks. The Ministry of Education wants to roll out rapid testing of students in a number of cities as part of a trial to see whether in-class teaching will be possible in the near future. Groningen will get the ball rolling next week.

Minister Engelshoven announced her plans to the House of Representatives. She has designated three cities where colleges, universities and regional education centres (ROCs) will be allowed to set up rapid testing sites. Both students and staff will be tested voluntarily at these locations. The Minister said her objective is to find out whether this might enable more physical classes to go ahead.

In addition to Groningen, Amsterdam and Delft are also investigating the possibility of setting up rapid testing sites. Groningen will start by inviting 100 university students to have themselves tested 24 hours before physically sitting an exam. They will receive their test results within three hours. The normal coronavirus measures will remain in effect for all students during the exam, even for those who test negative. 

Based on the pilot, a decision will be taken about setting up rapid testing sites that can be used for labs and practical classes too.

HOP, Hein Cuppen

Translation: Taalcentrum-VU

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