Coronavirus CT News: Sacred Heart University using 'scent tents' to fight COVID-19

FAIRFIELD, Connecticut (WABC) -- Sacred Heart University wants students and staff to stop and smell the roses in the fight against COVID-19, erecting 10 "scent tents" around campus.

Loss of smell is a symptom of coronavirus, and each tent is equipped with a large bouquet of roses inside.

"This gives people an opportunity to make a conscious effort to see whether or not you can smell the roses," Chief of Public Safety Gary MacNamara said. "You match that with all the prevention measures we're trying to put forward."

Sacred Heart has nearly 100 active cases and 106 recovered cases, and 25% of students are randomly tested each week.

Related: New Jersey reports coronavirus 'outbreaks' at 11 schools

The scent tents are being implemented as another tool to quickly identify and isolate someone who is infected.

Reaction has been positive.

"I feel like a lot of schools don't have this," student Olivia Novak said. "Obviously it smells good, so it's nice to walk through."

The university is ramping up our asymptomatic random testing and will test 1,300 students this week.

Related: NYC to issue fine for mask defiers

Next week, the school begins saliva testing and will test 2,800 community members.

They hope this information, combined with contact tracing, will allow them to identify spikes and spread and make appropriate decisions to keep the virus from spreading.

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