Add news
March 2010
April 2010
May 2010June 2010July 2010
August 2010
September 2010October 2010
November 2010
December 2010
January 2011
February 2011March 2011April 2011May 2011June 2011July 2011August 2011September 2011October 2011November 2011December 2011January 2012February 2012March 2012April 2012May 2012June 2012July 2012August 2012September 2012October 2012November 2012December 2012January 2013February 2013March 2013April 2013May 2013June 2013July 2013August 2013September 2013October 2013November 2013December 2013January 2014February 2014March 2014April 2014May 2014June 2014July 2014August 2014September 2014October 2014November 2014December 2014January 2015February 2015March 2015April 2015May 2015June 2015July 2015August 2015September 2015October 2015November 2015December 2015January 2016February 2016March 2016April 2016May 2016June 2016July 2016August 2016September 2016October 2016November 2016December 2016January 2017February 2017March 2017April 2017May 2017June 2017July 2017August 2017September 2017October 2017November 2017December 2017January 2018February 2018March 2018April 2018May 2018June 2018July 2018August 2018September 2018October 2018November 2018December 2018January 2019February 2019March 2019April 2019May 2019June 2019July 2019August 2019September 2019October 2019November 2019December 2019January 2020February 2020March 2020April 2020May 2020June 2020July 2020August 2020September 2020
News Every Day |

COVID Testing Sites to Lose Federal Funding Even as Fauci Calls for More Testing

COVID Testing Sites to Lose Federal Funding Even as Fauci Calls for More Testing
Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, waits to testify at a hearing of the U.S. House Committee on Energy and Commerce on Capitol Hill on June 23, 2020. in Washington, D.C.

The Trump administration is planning to defund a number of COVID-19 testing sites across the country, and it remains unclear whether doing so might be part of a broad plan by the president to “slow down on testing.”

Thirteen sites across five states in the U.S. that have been funded since the start of the administration’s response to the coronavirus pandemic are set to lose federal dollars by the end of this month, according to reporting from Talking Points Memo. Seven of the sites included in that list are in Texas alone, a state that has seen rates of coronavirus increase substantially in just the past few days.

Looking over the past week’s numbers, from June 16 to 22, Texas witnessed a daily average of 4,037.85 cases. That’s more than double the previous week’s daily average, when just 2,018.71 cases per day were observed.

In spite of that spike in numbers, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) is saying that the defunding of those seven sites is necessary to “transition” away from federal government funded testing. The transition, however, goes against what many local health officials want to see happen.

“Cases are continuing to rise in Dallas County, and we want to continue with the testing,” Rocky Vaz, director of emergency management in Dallas, told Talking Points Memo.

HHS seemed adamant in ending the funding, Vaz explained. “They told us very clearly that they are not going to extend it,” he said, adding that he and his agency were “not expecting it to continue beyond June 30.”

The scheduled defunding, which may turn into closures, comes about as confusion abounds over President Donald Trump’s comments from a campaign event in Tulsa, Oklahoma, over the weekend. Trump told attendees at that event that he was frustrated with the rise in new coronavirus case figures, and that he believed the best way to address those numbers was to limit testing.

“When you do testing to that extent, you’re going to find more people, you’re going to find more cases. So I said to my people, ‘Slow the testing down, please,'” Trump said on Saturday.

The president doubled-down on Monday, saying in an interview that the “reason we have more cases is because we do more testing than any other country by far.” On Tuesday, Trump also tweeted that “with smaller testing we would show fewer cases!”

While the U.S. has performed more tests in terms of raw numbers, the president doesn’t appear to account for population differences. “The US may have done the most tests, but not the highest # of tests per capita,” Jennifer Nuzzo, a senior scholar at the Johns Hopkins Center for Health Security, wrote on Twitter, disputing the president’s accounts.

The comments from Trump have led many to wonder whether he’s more concerned with perceptions of the pandemic than eradicating or combating it.

In a stark departure from Trump’s messaging, however, Anthony Fauci, a member of Trump’s coronavirus task force and the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, told Congress on Tuesday that the strategy on testing wasn’t to slow down, but to increase the number of tests conducted daily in the U.S. in the coming weeks.

“I, as a member of the task force, and my colleagues on the task force, I know for sure, to my knowledge, none of us have ever been told to slow down on testing,” Fauci said. “That just is a fact. In fact, we will be doing more testing.”

Read also

How Old Navy quickly turned its stores into e-commerce distribution centers

I am more than somebody – Yinka Rhythmz (Mr. Somebody)

US threatens Baghdad with sanctions over Iran-backed militia attacks in Iraq: Sources

News, articles, comments, with a minute-by-minute update, now on — latest news 24/7. You can add your news instantly now — here