I am a healthy 58-year-old male. On Saturday, July 11, 2020, my wife and I were on a return flight from Florida after a one-week trip. During the flight, I experienced a scratchy throat and cough.
Upon return, I immediately called my internist and went for testing. On the morning of Monday, July 13, the provider performed a quick strep test and a more comprehensive strep test. I was also tested for COVID-19.
The COVID-19 test was sent to Quest Diagnostics. I checked back every day or two, only to hear from my internist's office (one of the top infectious disease internists in the region) that testing results usually take several days to post.
I was shocked my results did not return within a “few days” but in fact arrived a few hours shy of two weeks!
How ineffective could you possibly be?
On August 9th, Bill Gates was interviewed by Fareed Zakaria on CNN. Mr. Gates, who is a visionary with a global perspective, simply stated our country’s pandemic response is failing us and wasting billions of dollars by reimbursing providers for COVID-19 tests, regardless of when the results arrive (i.e., rewarding slow and ineffective testing procedures rather than demanding tests be processed within 24 or 48 hours). Without efficient testing and contact tracing, how can you possibly contain the pandemic? You cannot.
Now we wait for the vaccination trials to complete, so we can get back to being us. Maybe, just maybe, we can listen to the pragmatic, logical, and lifesaving thoughts and suggestions presented by one of our top business leaders. Thank you, Mr. Gates, for providing your time and offering a simple and logical tenet. Only pay for quick and accurate testing!