Inside the Numbers: COVID-19 testing capacity lagging

coronavirus researcher

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Is it not stunning that, a month into COVID-19, we still aren’t doing enough testing, that we haven’t figured out ways to ramp up our capacity to conduct testing?

Might our inability to ramp up testing sufficient to what our public health folks tell us we need to be able to do be an indication that we will never be able to meet that demand?

You’d assume that the first priority of the Trump administration and the administrations of our 50 state governors would have made this a priority on Day 1.

And to that end, I remember AFP running news items about UVA and VCU, dating back to March 20 and March 25, respectively.

University hospital systems across the country have made similar announcements regarding their own in-house efforts, and yet, here we are.

According to the COVID Tracking Project, we’re at just under 3 million COVID-19 tests nationally, just over 42,000 in Virginia.

Maybe the conclusion needs to be that we just can’t do it, that we’ve done what we can do to ramp up capacity, and this is it.

Again according to the COVID Tracking Project, we’ve been consistently conducting more than 100,000 tests per day since March 30, so, for the last 15 days at this writing, averaging 131,000 tests per day over that span.

Since that March 30 date, Virginia has processed a total of 29,363 tests, an average of 1,958 per day.

Yesterday, Monday, April 13, the COVID Tracking Project recorded 129,114 tests nationally, and 1,416 in Virginia.

This is pretty much where we are now.

We’re not going to be able to conduct millions of tests a day. That’s just reality.

It’s obvious we’re just not capable of blanketing ourselves in COVID tests as a way out of where we are now.

Story by Chris Graham


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