UVA testing wastewater at dorms to detect coronavirus

Sep 8, 2020

CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (WVIR) - Scientists at the University of Virginia are digging deep into the pipes on UVA Grounds to detect the presence of the coronavirus, one flush at a time.

“We collect the sample over a 24-hour period so we can get every flushing event, and then it takes us about 10 hours to process the sample,” Dr. Amy Mathers, infectious disease physician and clinical microbiology associate director at UVA, said.

Since early June, researchers have been testing the wastewater at dorms where positive cases were detected to serve as controls.

As students move onto UVA Grounds, UVA Wastewater Treatment Engineer Lisa Colosi Peterson says the plan is to test the dorms six days a week for COVID-19 to stay ahead of the spread.

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