COVID-19 testing

The Blair County Courthouse sits on Allegheny Street in Hollidaysburg, PA.
Min Xian / WPSU

As cases of COVID-19 continue to rise in Blair County, local leaders are encouraging residents to follow precautions and take advantage of the free testing the state Department of Health has set up at the Blair County Convention Center.

Bruce Erb, chairman of the Blair County Commissioners, said the site at the Convention Center has been very busy — 500 to 600 tests a day.

Photo of the Penn Highlands DuBois hospital
Courtesy of Penn Highlands Healthcare

As Pennsylvania sets multiple records for one-day increases in COVID-19 cases in recent days, Penn Highlands Healthcare announced Thursday it’s offering rapid COVID-19 testing in six locations.

Chief Operating Officer Mark Norman announced during a conference call that rapid testing will be available in six Penn Highlands locations for symptomatic individuals or those who have been exposed. Those include Clearfield, DuBois, Punxsutawney, Moshannon Valley, St. Marys and Huntingdon.

Reem Abdou poses for a picture in front of the Nittany Lion Shrine.
Reem Abdou

Friday is the last day of in-person classes for Penn State’s fall semester. Some students plan to head home for the rest of the semester while others are returning after Thanksgiving break. Students also shared what they’re doing to try not to bring the coronavirus home to their families.

Senior civil engineering student John Kosko contracted the coronavirus at Penn State in late September. Now healthy for over a month, Kosko said his family in New Jersey is comfortable with having him home for Thanksgiving.

A mobile COVID-19 test site on Penn State University Park campus.
Min Xian / WPSU

Penn State is urging students to get tested for COVID-19 before the university transitions to fully remote instruction for the rest of the fall semester on November 20.

In a webinar Tuesday, the director of the university’s COVID-19 Operations Control Center, Kelly Wolgast, said free departure testing for all students is voluntary but highly recommended. More than 6,000 University Park students have already scheduled one.



Penn State President Eric Barron hosted a virtual seminar on Thursday for faculty and staff to ask questions about the university's approach to the coronavirus pandemic. The university is looking into new health protocols for the spring.  

A staff member of AMI Healthcare administered a COVID-19 test at the pop-up site at the Nittany Mall in State College on Friday, Sept. 25.
Min Xian / WPSU

Free COVID-19 testing at a pop-up site in State College will continue for another five days, as both the demand for testing among residents and the positivity rate from tests performed so far at the site remain high, according to the Pennsylvania Department of Health.

A COVID-19 nasal swab test is administered to a person in a car
Min Xian / WPSU


Free COVID-19 testing at the Nittany Mall in State College began Friday, drawing a long line of residents, as part of the Pennsylvania Department of Health’s effort to contain the rising case numbers in Centre County.

Naomi Niyah, a graduate student at Penn State, went to the site on Friday morning. She said she hasn’t been contacted by the university for its surveillance testing program.

“I don’t like the current situation for testing so might as well do it myself here,” Niyah said. 

Lock Haven University is moving to fully remote instruction starting today because of a rise in COVID-19 cases.
Min Xian / WPSU

Lock Haven University is moving to fully remote instruction starting Wednesday because of a rise in COVID-19 cases, the university announced Tuesday. The suspension of in-person classes will be in effect until Sept. 21, with the hope that it will curb further spread of the virus.

Penn State is reporting 32 new COVID-19 cases since last Friday.
Min Xian / WPSU

Penn State updated its COVID-19 dashboard Tuesday with data reported between Friday, Aug. 28 and Sunday, Aug. 30. In that time period, 25 University Park campus students tested positive out of 268 symptomatic tests conducted. Seven asymptomatic UP students also tested positive for COVID-19. 

A mobile COVID-19 test site on Penn State University Park campus.
Min Xian / WPSU

Updated: Friday, August 28 at 5:34 p.m.

Penn State updated its COVID-19 dashboard for the first week of fall semester classes Friday. It shows 28 new positive cases from a total of 4,664 tests conducted this week.