BATON ROUGE, La. (WAFB) - As students get back into the swing of the semester, LSU is taking a whole new approach in order to encourage students to get tested for COVID-19.
The new incentive for LSU students to get tested appears to be working. The number of students who got tested suddenly jumped from 4,000 to 5,000 and the reason why is because of football. David Tatman is a senior at LSU, he says, “I am out here to get tested because I want to get football tickets.”
Another LSU senior, Daniel Johnson says, “There’s not going to be many opportunities to go to games, so it would be nice to get into the stadium at least one time even if it is only 25% filled just to be able to see the tigers go out on the field would be a great feeling to have.”
Most students say they’re only getting tested in order to get priority for football tickets after the university announced a number of changes for student ticketing this season.
“So, it was a little surprising at the same time because LSU put out a statement saying that to get tickets, students have to go get tested or show a negative result and so students will do whatever they need to do to get their tickets,” says Vishal Vasanji who is in charge LSU COVID-19 testing sites.
If students want to increase their chances of sitting in the stadium for a football game getting a COVID-19 test on campus helps. The LSU COVID-19 testing site on Nicholson has been a popular one for students, workers at this site say that they believe they have tested at least 500 students this week.
Most colleges around the state are trying to increase their on-campus testing because college students are more likely to be asymptomatic according to the Louisiana Department of Health.
“Yes, asymptomatic spread is definitely a concern and college and universities where they have students back on campus. There are many that are living in residential dorms, obviously, Greek houses have students living in those. So, that’s a congregate setting so areas where COVID-19 trends to kind of take route and spread quickly,” says Kim Hood is LDH’s COVID-19 site coordinator.
If those asymptomatic students don’t get tested, they’re more likely to spread the virus beyond campus. “COVID-19 can spread even when we don’t know that it’s kind of within our bubble or close-knit group of friends as people are out and about and going to the grocery store and things that of that sort,” Hood adds
There are multiple testing sites on campus, and students can get tested for free. Some of them though is getting tested for reasons other than their health.
Anyone can guarantee more Tigers will be in and out of these testing sites whether they are feeling bad or not, so they can up their chance of seeing their tigers on the field.
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