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The plan to test out-of-state University of Hawaiʻi students returning for the fall semester for COVID-19 will be developed by UH and the Hawaiʻi Department of Health (DOH).

“We look forward to working with the University of Hawaiʻi in developing a testing program that can ensure students returning here are free of COVID-19,” said DOH Director Bruce Anderson at a May 13 news conference with Gov. David Ige.

Protocols for testing, along contact tracing and quarantine as needed, are key components in UHʻs plans to resume in-person instruction at UHʻs 10 campuses in the fall semester, which the university announced on May 4.

UH President David Lassner confirmed that UH and DOH have already had initial conversations on testing and that the university is looking forward to more detailed discussions.

“There are a number of universities on the mainland that have worked through approaches, and we will be studying some of the best practices elsewhere,” said Lassner at the May 13 news conference. “We may not be first but we will certainly be one of the leaders in making it happen in partnership with the department of health.”

DOH and UH announced on May 13 that they are partnering to create a program to train personnel and community health workers to support DOH in conducting COVID-19 contact tracing.

More details on plans for the fall semester, including testing out-of-state students, are expected to be announced as plans are more fully developed.

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