A black market for negative COVID-19 tests has popped up across the globe as more countries require travelers to prove their negative status before entering, a report said Wednesday.
In France, seven people were arrested last week for allegedly hawking doctored coronavirus tests at Charles de Gaulle International Airport, the Associated Press reported. The suspects, who were not identified, were charging up to $360 for the fake tests.
Authorities tracked the ring down after finding a man bound for Ethiopia with a fake test, according to the report. The alleged scammers face up to five years in prison if convicted.
On Feb. 6, a scientist in a small infectious disease lab on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention campus in Atlanta was putting a coronavirus test kit through its final paces. The lab designed and built the diagnostic test in record time, and the little vials that contained necessary reagents to identify the virus were boxed up and ready to go. But NPR has learned the results of that final quality control test suggested something troubling — it said the kit could fail 33% of the time.
Under normal circumstances, that kind of result would stop a test in its tracks, half a dozen public and private lab officials told NPR. But an internal CDC review obtained by NPR confirms that lab officials decided to release the kit anyway. The revelation comes from a CDC internal review, known as a “root-cause analysis,” which the agency conducted to understand why an early coronavirus test didn’t work properly and wound up costing scientists precious weeks in the early days of a pandemic.
False positives with coronavirus testing are being reported so often that it makes you wonder how many ARE NOT being reported.
Unfortunately, this hasn’t stopped testing or the introduction and marketing of new testing kits or any of the COVID-19 mandates being opposed by American doctors as well as citizens and people worldwide. It also hasn’t stopped invasive and sometimes harmful screening procedures (see 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7).
Elevated ‘cycle thresholds’ may be detecting virus long after it is past the point of infection.
A growing body of research suggests that a significant number of confirmed COVID-19 infections in the U.S. — perhaps as many as 9 out of every 10 — may not be infectious at all, with much of the country’s testing equipment possibly picking up mere fragments of the disease rather than full-blown infections.
Confirmed cases of the disease have been the focal point of public health authorities and governments worldwide for many months, with countries across the globe working frantically to shore up their testing infrastructure and ensure that most citizens who want a COVID-19 test can obtain one with relative ease.
Many politicians, meanwhile — including most state governors in the U.S. — have tied reopening policies to the number of cases detected in the local community, with regions and localities often being permitted to reopen in staggered “phases” only when they have reached successively lower benchmarks of average new daily cases in the area.
Numerous institutions, meanwhile, have adopted testing protocols in an attempt to preempt the spread of the virus. American colleges and universities, for instance, have turned to mass testing in order to closely monitor incidences of the disease among students, particularly residential students living on campus.
Yet a burgeoning line of scientific inquiry suggests that many confirmed infections of COVID-19 may actually be just residual traces of the virus itself, a contention that — if true — may suggest both that current high levels of positive viruses are clinically insignificant and that the mitigation measures used to suppress them may be excessive.
A rash of false-positive coronavirus tests has led the University of Arizona to issue an apology to student-athletes who it claimed had the virus but did not.
The university reported Thursday that 13 student-athletes had tested positive for COVID-19 — a single-day record for the school.
Three days later, however, Arizona athletics said in a statement that the actual number of positive tests was just two. That means the initial numbers inflated the total by more than 600 percent.
“On Thursday, Arizona Athletics reported a single-day high of positive COVID-19 test results for student-athletes,” the university said Sunday. “After concluding an exhaustive contact-tracing protocol, the medical director for Arizona Athletics requested additional testing of the samples, stating that the contact history reports did not support the positive test results.
“After further review, Arizona Athletics Director of Medical Services Dr. Stephen Paul said conflicting information prompted a rerun of the test samples. The retest showed that false positive results were previously reported.
“On Sep. 3, the athletics department reported 13 positive test results for athletes, after a rerun of those tests, two came back positive,” the university said.
Better safe than… accurate or effective.
It has been revealed that the standard tests being used in the US to diagnose Covid-19 cases are far too sensitive, with the vast majority of people marked down as being positive actually turning out to be negative.
Top US virologists have been stunned by revelations about the laxity of the US Covid testing regimen. It turns out that tests that deliver a simple binary “positive or negative” result are not fit for purpose, as they tell us nothing about the contagiousness of each person.
Data from three US states – New York, Nevada and Massachusetts – shows that when the amount of the virus found in a person is taken into account, up to 90 percent of people who have tested positive should actually have been negative, as they are carrying only tiny amounts of the virus, are not contagious, pose no risk to others, and have no need to isolate.
This means that only a fraction of the daily “cases” being reported so hysterically in the mainstream media are actual, bona fide Covid-19 sufferers, and need treatment and to separate themselves from others.
A “reporting error” in North Carolina caused the state to overcount its coronavirus tests by 200,000 since the start of the pandemic, according to an announcement from state officials on Wednesday.
The error, which state officials largely blamed the lab for, did not have an effect on certain measures, including the total number of positive cases from the state.
Mandy Cohen, who serves as secretary of North Carolina’s Department of Health and Human Services, pointed a finger at LabCorp Diagnostics for giving the state two different daily test count numbers when data was submitted.
“The positive cases are reported electronically,” Cohen said. “Those continue to be accurate. The number that we are correcting today is just the total cumulative lab tests.”
According to a news release from state health officials, the tally for completed tests is calculated in a different way than that of positive test counts, which are handled using data from an individual, patient level.
Imagine a virus that is such a serious threat … that you don’t even know you have it in most cases unless you get a test? The tail wagging the dog? The cart driving the horse? If we are now going to hold our nation hostage because of this obsession over PCR (polymerase chain reaction) swab tests, we should at the very least make certain they’re accurate.
What happens when we have expedited and chaotic test results driving an epidemic curve rather than actual symptoms? You get what happened to Ohio Governor Mike DeWine last Thursday. He tested positive for the virus after experiencing absolutely no symptoms. But because he is such a VIP, he got a second, more accurate test that showed he was in fact negative for SARS-CoV-2. The same thing happened to Detroit Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford, who tested negative after receiving a false positive and was therefore allowed out of coronavirus prison.
How many more people are really negative, and why don’t people who don’t have such connections get the same due process that DeWine was accorded before upending their lives because of symptoms milder than a cold or perhaps completely nonexistent? And why won’t this experience change DeWine’s entire attitude toward treating every single COVID-19 case like it’s contagious pancreatic cancer, regardless of the symptoms or of whether we can even trust the test results?
This is a serious question that threatens the liberty of all Americans. As the FDA’s most recent fact sheet on PCR tests notes, the dangers of false positives include the following: “A recommendation for isolation of the patient, monitoring of household or other close contacts for symptoms, patient isolation that might limit contact with family or friends and may increase contact with other potentially COVID-19 patients, limits in the ability to work, the delayed diagnosis and treatment for the true infection causing the symptoms, unnecessary prescription of a treatment or therapy, or other unintended adverse effects.”
That’s nothing to sneeze at.