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White House Releases Coronavirus Testing Guidelines

The White House released a “blueprint” Monday for states to scale up their coronavirus testing in the coming week. The goal is for states to have enough tests for at least 2.6% of their populations each month. It is a threshold many have already met, while areas that have been hit harder by the virus would be able to test at the double that rate or higher.

The administration has had problems with testing from the start. Still, officials said yesterday the issue is now getting samples from people tested, either because guidelines on who can get tested are too strict, or there aren’t enough health care workers to take the nasal swabs.

On the first issue, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has expanded those prioritized to get tested to include asymptomatic people in high-risk settings, such as nursing homes. The guidelines also include surveillance testing and programs to isolate those who test positive and identify people with whom they had contact.