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Bates College awarded $1.7 million federal grant for COVID testing

The funds will reimburse the college for costs from testing during the pandemic.

LEWISTON, Maine — Editor's note: The video above aired April 6, 2021.

Bates College has been awarded a $1.7 million federal grant to reimburse costs from testing students and staff during the COVID pandemic. 

"The $1,700,893 Public Assistance grant will go to the State of Maine to reimburse the liberal arts college in Lewiston for setting up and operating a campus-wide testing system between January and June 2021," the Federal Emergency Management Agency said in a news release. 

During that time, Bates College performed 57,743 PCR tests and 32,500 antigen tests to track the spread of COVID and defend against outbreaks, according to FEMA. 

"All students and employees were tested twice a week, with a concentrated period of three rounds of testing after students began arriving for the winter semester in February, with policies restricting student interactions during this period," the news release states. "In response to signs of an outbreak identified by testing conducted on March 29th, students were tested three times a week for the weeks of March 29th, and April 5th, 12th, and 19th with intensive use of both the PCR and antigen tests."

Thus far, FEMA has given more than $69 million in public assistance grants to the Pine Tree State to reimburse pandemic costs. 

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