MSNBC’s Melber: Are We Giving up on Comprehensive Testing?

MSNBC’s Melber: Are We Giving up on Comprehensive Testing?


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Janet Ybarra
Former Washington Journalist
Contributor on The Bipartisan Press

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With the numbers of both cases of COVID-19, and deaths from the illness, continuing across the United States, MSNBC host Ari Melber wondered on-air if testing just 300,000 people a day for the novel coronavirus is tantamount to the federal government just giving up on its pandemic response.

So far, there have been more than 1.7 million reported cases, and about 100,000 deaths have happened in the United States, according to the most recent figures.

“On the face of it, the idea that 300,000 tests a day is absurd, says the director of the global Harvard health institute. Doctor, are we at a place three months in, give or take for America, where the federal government is giving up on comprehensive testing and just saying, “Here we go?'” Melber asked his guest, epidemiologist Dr Anne Rimoin.

“This is really a big problem here. You know, we need good testing. We talked about the need for testing. It needs to be widespread, available to everyone,” she said. “Accessible. And testing not just people who are likely to be positive, but looking at asymptomatic infections, as well. We do not know where we are. Ari, we’ve been talking about this for months now. I’m saying the same thing today that I said two weeks ago, three weeks ago, four weeks ago.

“So the national strategy, your point is important, we still need a national strategy. As we are opening up, it is more important than ever that we double down on testing, national strategy, more testing available to everybody,” Dr Rimoin said. “As this country opens up, we are going to be seeing more cases, and we need to have all of these things in place, all of this time, testing, contact tracing, goody cease surveillance. Numbers that we can trust. We are not there, so we are at great risk as the country opens up.”

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