Free COVID-19 Testing to Begin Friday for WT Campus

Chip Chandler Jul 20, 2020
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Free COVID-19 Testing to Begin Friday for WT Campus

Copy by Chip Chandler, 806-651-2124,


CANYON, Texas — Free COVID-19 testing for the West Texas A&M University campus community will begin Friday.

Tests will be given by appointment between 9 and 11 a.m. Friday, July 24, in the Virgil Henson Activities Center. WT has set up a central location for the testing, which will consist of a simple, painless mouth swab monitored by trained personnel.

After July 24, tests are available for any student by appointment. Additionally, faculty and staff are encouraged to get tested if they experience COVID-19 symptoms or suspect they have been exposed to someone with COVID-19. Close contact is defined by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention as being within 6 feet of someone with COVID-19 for more than 15 minutes at any time, beginning 48 hours before the individual had symptoms, regardless of wearing a face mask.

To make an appointment, click here:

Approximately 15,000 test kits, approximately 10 percent of the System’s total student population, will be distributed to System campuses each month. Each campus will receive a monthly supply of tests determined by the System, so WT will get about 1,000 tests per month, said Todd Rasberry, vice president for philanthropy and external relations.

“WT is pleased that The Texas A&M University System is moving forward with increased accessibility and availability of COVID-19 testing,” Rasberry said. “We anticipate that we’ll be able to move forward soon with a streamlined testing system that will help us return to campus safely and securely in time for the Aug. 24 beginning of the fall semester.” 

Ensuring the health and safety of students is the top priority, said John Sharp, chancellor of the Texas A&M University System.

“Facilitating increased accessibility and availability of COVID-19 testing will help us mitigate the spread and help to protect each other by taking preventative and proactive measures,” Sharp said. 

The testing is possible thanks to an agreement Chancellor Sharp negotiated with Curative Inc., a national testing company based in California. Curative has committed to turning around lab results within 30 hours from when the sample arrives at their lab.

To date, Curative has released more than 1.2 million test results and is processing 55 to 60 thousand test kits per day with plenty of capacity. A major benefit of the Curative testing system is it is a turn-key operation, offering tests, shipping, processing and a software system that collects and reports results.

While the tests are free, those who have insurance are encouraged to use their primary care physician to access the test so that their test can be paid for by insurance.


About West Texas A&M University

WT is located in Canyon, Texas, on a 342-acre residential campus. Established in 1910, the University has been part of The Texas A&M University System since 1990. With enrollment of more than 10,000, WT offers 60 undergraduate degree programs, 38 master’s degrees and two doctoral degrees. The University is also home to the Panhandle-Plains Historical Museum, the largest history museum in the state and the home of one of the Southwest’s finest art collections. The Buffaloes are a member of the NCAA Division II Lone Star Conference and offers 15 men’s and women’s athletics programs.


About Curative

Curative Inc. was founded to develop tests for sepsis in January 2020 and pivoted to COVID-19 in early March 2020 upon realizing the urgent need for test development and production in the United States. Founded by Fred Turner and comprised of a team of doctors, scientists, engineers and health industry experts, the Curative test is a simple-to-use oral fluid COVID-19 test that can be rapidly scaled to enable widespread access to testing to keep our communities. For more details on Curative, please visit


About The Texas A&M University System

The Texas A&M University System is one of the largest systems of higher education in the nation with a budget of $6.3 billion. The System is a statewide network of 11 universities; a comprehensive health science center; eight state agencies, including the Texas Division of Emergency Management; and the RELLIS Campus. The Texas A&M System educates more than 151,000 students and makes more than 22 million additional educational contacts through service and outreach programs each year. System-wide, research and development expenditures exceeded $1 billion in FY 2019 and helped drive the state’s economy.