May 4, 2020

John Oliver's Last Week Tonight details exactly why we are so far behind in testing for coronavirus. Via Deadline:

He points out how badly we are in need of testing in order to open society — as nearly every public health official is pointing out.

“There’s almost nothing more important than widespread effective testing,” he said. It is important in order for us to track and contain the spread — and testing is alarmingly scarce despite what Donald Trump says.

Many are calling the lack of testing “the original sin” of American pandemic failure. “Had testing caught the cases in this country early we could’ve managed the virus through contact tracing and targeted quarantine but that did not happen so the virus spread widely forcing us to use the blunt instrument of making everyone stay at home,” said Oliver.

He adds that lack of testing goes to the “very heart of how we got into this situation” and “the fact is that broad testing is the only safe way out.”

Oliver goes on to give us some startling figures. A good day for testing for the country, at a low estimate, is 500,000 a day. A good target is 35 million a day. The U.S. is currently at about 200,000 a day.

It is here where Oliver asks the question: “What the fuck happened?” He then unpacks diagnostic tests and antibody tests.

Once again, a late-night comedian is more informative about what's going on than the president of the United States.

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