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How UW-Eau Claire’s COVID-19 response compares to UW-La Crosse, Madison

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Eau Claire (WQOW)- Colleges across Wisconsin are taking some drastic measures to fight the spread of COVID-19, but UW-Eau Claire seems to be taking a more reserved approach.

While both UW-Madison and UW-La Crosse are moving classes online and quarantining students temporarily, UW-Eau Claire officials say they are "encouraged" by recent test results and the protocols they have in place.

As of September 13, UW-Eau Claire has reported 184 positive COVID-19 tests since September 1, and UW-La Crosse has reported 275. Meanwhile, UW-Madison has recorded nearly 2,000 positive cases.

While UW-Eau Claire's numbers are significantly lower, its testing regimen hasn't been in place as long.

UW-Madison has conducted roughly 2,400 tests per day, including employees.

UW-La Crosse tested 956 students last week, but UW-Eau Claire took two weeks to test 936 students.

According to UW-Eau Claire officials, the university does not test employees on campus, saying they would rather focus on tracking the virus in the student population.

The university also started antigen testing later than other schools and tested a select number of students to start rather than the entire population.

A number of UW-Madison students left campus after hearing about the dorm quarantine, and UW-La Crosse announced a shelter in place over the weekend for all students.

When asked if students would be refunded if they move off-campus, UW-Eau Claire officials say the university is working with students individually to determine the best outcome if they decide to move out of residence halls, and they are not considering a shelter in place order at this time.

Evan Hong

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