U.S. Government to Miss Target of 1 Million Coronavirus Tests This Week

The Trump administration won't be able to meet its stated goal of having 1 million coronavirus tests available by the end of the week, senators say.
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The Trump administration won't not be able to meet its stated goal of having 1 million coronavirus tests available by the end of the week, several U.S. senators said Thursday.

The remarks followed a briefing by Anthony Fauci, head of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, Seema Verma, head of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid, and Ken Cuccinelli, acting deputy secretary of Homeland Security.

"There won’t be a million people to get a test by the end of the week,” Republican Sen. Rick Scott of Florida said, according to Bloomberg.“It’s way smaller than that. And still, at this point, it’s still through public health departments.”

The senators said the government was in the process of sending out test kits and people will still need to be trained on how to use them.

“By the end of the week they’re getting them out to the mail,” Republican Sen. James Lankford of Oklahoma said, according to Bloomberg. “It’s going to take time to be able to get them, receive them, re-verify them and then be able to put them into use.”

The administration said Monday it could have the capacity for nearly a million tests for the coronavirus by the end of this week.

Dr. Stephen Hahn, the commissioner of the Food and Drug Administration, said that private companies and academic laboratories have been pulled in to develop and validate their own coronavirus tests.

Stocks were tumbling Thursday, giving up much of the previous session's gains, after coronavirus infections in the U.S. rose and California declared a medical state of emergency after the state's first death from the virus.