At the very beginning of the Covid-19 pandemic, testing was an issue. The virus was new, supplies were short and early tests were inaccurate. But now, 5 months into the pandemic, testing remains a problem. There are still images of incredible lines of cars full of people hoping for a test. There are also long delays to get results.
Admiral Brett Giroir was appointed by President Trump to be the country’s testing czar. On Sunday, Giroir was pressed about these testing issues by CNN’s Jake Tapper.
When asked about testing issues, the Naval Admiral replied, “We have to prioritize our testing. As I told you, in August we’ll have 50 million tests available… Everyone who needs a test — we’re prioritizing that and they will get it. The two-week turnaround, again, I told you the data. it’s 4.27 days for half of those tests that are done in the commercial labs. I’m highly confident that turnaround will decrease this week with all the steps we’re doing like surge testing, point of care testing, nursing home testing.”
Adm. Brett Giroir defends testing delays: "The data are, the average turnaround is 4.27 days … We are trying to bring that down…"
Tapper: "Are you happy where testing is right now?"
Giroir: "I’m never going to be happy until we have this under control.” pic.twitter.com/08gNEub0GC
— The Recount (@therecount) July 26, 2020
Tapper also wondered why the Defense Production Act hasn’t been used to create many more testing kits. He asked, “Are you afraid to bring this up to President Trump because it will upset him?”
“Everyone of the administration understands the importance of testing. Nobody in the task force is afraid to bring up anything to the vice president or the president. Every time I’ve met with the president, he’s been listening to all the data, he assesses that, he understands it. I meet with the vice president almost every single day. No one is trying to stop testing in this country. No one has ever told me to do that. We want more, we want better, we want quicker.”
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Todd Neikirk is a New Jersey-based politics and technology writer. His work has been featured in psfk.com, foxsports.com, and PoliticusUSA. An avid pet lover, he has been known to contribute to Pet Lifestyles Magazine. He enjoys sports, politics, technology, and spending time at the shore with his family.