SPRINGFIELD, Ill. — More than 10% of the more than 500,000 tests run so far in the state of Illinois for COVID-19 might have returned false negative results.
The governor said 26,000 people were tested for COVID-19 Thursday in Illinois. About 3,000 of those were problematic tests developed by Abbott Labs and they are now being looked at again.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration issued an alert yesterday about the accuracy of Abbott Labs’ rapid COVID-19 test. The test is called the ID Now test. It’s been used to screen White House staffers. Turns out it has also been used in nearly 10% of the tests run in Illinois so far.
Despite that the governor said we are still on the cusp of moving to Phase 3, in the last 24 hours only 9% of the people tested in Illinois have been positive.
On Friday, a daily press conference, Dr. Ngozi Ezike announced 2,432 new cases of coronavirus disease in Illinois, including 130 additional deaths. That brings the total number of cases to 90,369 and 4,058 deaths.
Illinois is testing 4.7% of the population per month. The federal government recently called on states to test at least 2% of the population. Right now, Illinois is averaging about 20,000 tests a day.
“We are testing as much as anyone could at this point,” Gov. JB Pritzker said. “So we’re finding more people are positive here. That doesn’t mean there aren’t people positive in other states that aren’t being tested.”
The governor says he’s worried about people crossing the Illinois border coming from states that are opening sooner like Iowa and Indiana and could infect Illinois residents.
When asked about his own family who has received some attention for alleged non-essential travel, the governor said he prefers to keep their whereabouts private. However, he said they had been sheltering in place in Florida. They are now working on the family farm in Wisconsin.
“I would hope that the GOP the Republican super pac that’s pushing stories like this about my family would stop because they are putting my children and my family in danger,” Pritzker said.
On Friday, public health officials also said every pregnant woman should have a COVID-19 test before giving birth to protect their newborn babies and hospital workers.