University of Waterloo tells students to get vaccinated or undergo COVID-19 screenings twice a week

University of Waterloo students are being told they will have to undergo twice-weekly antigen screening if they opt not to be fully vaccinated in time for the fall semester. Only people who are fully vaccinated or who have negative test results will be allowed on campus.

Students can go to campus if antigen screening comes back negative

A sign outside a university in Ontario reads University of Waterloo.
The University of Waterloo says if people coming to campus this fall aren't fully vaccinated, they will need to undergo twice-weekly antigen screening. (Kate Bueckert/CBC)

The University of Waterloo is warning students that if they're not fully vaccinated against COVID-19 they will have to undergo twice-weekly antigen screenings.

People arriving on campus will use a new campus check-in tool that records which buildings people go into using the campus wifi. The university says as of September 1, people will need to self declare their vaccination status through the check-in tool.

To answer yes, people will need to have received their second dose of the COVID-19 vaccine at least 14 days or more prior to arriving at campus.

"If you respond 'no' or 'prefer not to say,' we will provide you with information about vaccination, booking appointments and other public health measures," the university said in a statement on its website on Monday. As well, those students will need to go for rapid antigen screening.

"You must continue to have a negative test result to come to campus," the school said.

Anyone who has a positive result will be asked to get a COVID-19 test at the on-campus assessment centre and will be told to self-isolate.

"Ensuring high rates of vaccination remains one of the most important ways we can protect public health," the university said, noting last week Colleges Ontario and the Council of Ontario Universities wrote to the province to ask for mandatory vaccinations of postsecondary students, staff and faculty on campus.