Testing

Regular testing for on-campus students, faculty and staff plays a key role in ensuring a safe environment for members of the GW community who live and work on campus.

The university has established a CLIA-certified public health laboratory to support a large-scale, in-house testing program. In-house testing allows for the earliest possible identification and containment of all infected persons, including asymptomatic infections. It enables the university to monitor any changes in COVID-19 transmission over time and across our diverse campus facilities and activities, so that we plan and scale modifications to operations based on specific changes in metrics.

  • All persons authorized to be on campus must participate in asymptomatic surveillance testing. 
  • Symptomatic testing is available for those who are experiencing COVID-19 symptoms or who have been exposed to a positive COVID-19 case. 
  • All tests for students, faculty and staff conducted by the public health laboratory are free of charge.
  • The Colonial Health Center (CHC) serves as the main health care resource for students. GW Occupational Health provides support for the ongoing health and safety of GW faculty and staff during the COVID-19 pandemic.

 

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COVID-19 Tests

Asymptomatic COVID-19 PCR (polymerase chain reaction) tests will be self-collected. Self-collected testing reduces the amount of personal protective equipment (PPE) required by providers and reduces possible exposure between workers and test takers.

Upon your arrival at the test site, you will receive a kit and instructions. Additional information is available through a step-by-step guide and videos (in English and with Spanish subtitles). You may request a provider-collected test if you are unable to perform a self-collection. 

Provider-collected tests will continue for symptomatic testing.

Scheduling a Test 

GW community members should make an appointment for testing through the medical portal

When you make an appointment, you will be asked if you are a student or an employee at the university. NOTE: if you are both a student and an employee, select your primary affiliation. Then select either a surveillance (asymptomatic, no symptoms) or sick (symptomatic) test.   At this time, individuals with symptoms can only be tested on the Foggy Bottom Campus. A portal instruction document (PDF) is available if needed.

When registering, ensure that your mobile phone number is current, update your mobile phone carrier and activate text messaging to receive your test results, as well as any updates and reminders.

On the day of your test, please bring:

  1. The confirmation QR code that you receive after you have made an appointment, downloaded to your phone or printed on a piece of paper.
  2. A photo ID (GWorld card, driver’s license or passport).

Test Due Date 

To check the due date for your next required test, click on the "Show Badge" button on the Home screen in the medical portal.  The due date is at the bottom of your badge below the QR code.

If you are overdue for your next test, your badge will read "Overdue".  Please schedule a COVID-19 test if you need access to campus.

Testing Locations and Hours

Testing is available at most of GW's campuses and centers. However, only the Foggy Bottom Campus will provide testing at the Colonial Health Center for persons who have symptoms consistent with COVID-19 or persons who may have been exposed to the COVID-19 virus.

The testing sites are closed on the weekends and university holidays.

Foggy Bottom Campus Asymptomatic (no symptoms) and Routine Testing

Medical trailer in Lot 3, on the corner of 20th and H Streets, NW
Please note: The closest street address is 2013 H Street, NW.  V
isitor parking is available in the University Student Center at 800 21st Street, NW (garage entrance on H Street between 21st and 22nd Streets).

Mondays - Thursdays:  6 a.m. - 7 p.m. 

Fridays:  8 a.m. - 4 p.m.

 

Foggy Bottom Campus Symptomatic Testing

Colonial Health Center, 800 21st Street, NW, Ground Floor

Mondays -Thursdays: 6:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m. 

Fridays: 12:30 - 4 p.m. 

 

Virginia Science and Technology Campus Asymptomatic (no symptoms) and Routine Testing

Enterprise Hall, 44983 Knoll Square

Thursdays:  9 a.m. - 3 p.m.

* Special Extended Hours: The VSTC test site will open from 6 - 8 p.m. on November 4 and December 2 

Arlington, Alexandria and Rockville Locations
Appointments are available through the medical portal. 


Test Results
The GW Public Health Lab will process your test and provide results within 24 to 48 hours. Each individual will receive an email or text to review their test results in the medical portal

  • If you receive a negative test result:
    • The virus that causes COVID-19 was not found in your sample. No additional actions are required and your access to campus is unaffected.
       
  • If you receive a positive test result:

There’s a very small chance that your COVID-19 test results could be wrong (a false positive or false negative test result). Your best course of action is to adhere to the behaviors outlined in the policy and contact the Colonial Health Center (students), 202-994-5300, or GW Occupational Health (faculty and staff), if you develop symptoms and/or your symptoms escalate.

All test results, positive and negative, will be reported to D.C. Health, Virginia Department of Health or other state or county governmental entity as may be required by law. Your test results will be disclosed to the Colonial Health Center (students), GW Occupational Health (faculty and staff) and the Campus COVID-19 Support Team (CCST). 

Confidential and Secure

All test results will be confidential and will be maintained in a secure GW server and only disclosed to authorized individuals, as noted in the consent. You will be able to access your result through the medical portal. All test results (positive and negative) will be reported by the laboratory to D.C. Health, Virginia Department of Health or other state or county governmental entity as may be required by law.  

External Tests

External PCR COVID-19 tests will be accepted in lieu of getting tested on campus. This option provides flexibility for those who prefer to test elsewhere at their own expense, or if they are also participating in required testing elsewhere. External testing is not reimbursable.

The COVID-19 test must be a PCR test and the lab must be CLIA-certified (the lab’s CLIA certified number should appear on the test results). Antigen tests are not accepted. Please ensure your full name appears on the results. Please note that external tests should be submitted no later than two days before your test due date, as takes one to two days to process. Tests submitted over the weekend will not be processed until Monday.

To upload your results to the medical portal, please follow these instructions:

  • Log into the medical portal.
  • Navigate to “Messages” and click “New Message.”
  • Select your affiliation and click “Continue.”
  • In the “Compose New Secure Message” screen, enter the subject line “COVID-19 External Test Results” and use the “Add Attachments” button to upload your file. You may upload a picture or a PDF file. 
  • Click “Send” to submit your results. 

Symptom Monitoring

Unvaccinated community members should update your symptoms in the medical portal. The portal is mobile friendly and this tracking should take less than two minutes.

Fully vaccinated students who develop symptoms consistent with COVID-19 should contact the Colonial Health Center at 202-994-5300; faculty and staff should contact Occupational Health at 202-677-6230.  These numbers are answered 24 hours a day, every day of the week by a clinician who can evaluate you for treatment or a referral.