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Why False Positives Matter, Too – msnNOW

https://www.nytimes.com/2020/10/25/health/coronavirus-testing-false-positive.html

The ever-increasing schedule of virtual platforms may make that shift easy for some, Dr. Mazer stated. For individuals whose work can only be done in individual, or who do not have a financial buffer, “this could be a substantial deal,” he stated. False positives can likewise be devastating from a treatment standpoint, stated Linoj Samuel, a scientific microbiologist at Henry Ford Health System in Detroit.

The ever-increasing schedule of virtual platforms might make that transition simple for some, Dr. Mazer said. For individuals whose work can only be done in person, or who lack a monetary buffer, “this might be a huge offer,” he said.
Caretakers, too, might find themselves put in a precarious position by false positives, which could force them to separate from children, older member of the family or other susceptible contacts. Should another person requirement to come in and take their place, the threats of direct exposure to the infection could increase for all involved.
And for facilities with minimal space, positioning an individual in unnecessary isolation could shift devices, treatment and even follow-up tests away from someone who might need those resources more.
New outbreaks
Under certain scenarios, an incorrect favorable could seed new coronavirus cases. Crowded centers, such as nursing prisons, hospitals or homes, might separate coronavirus-positive individuals together.
In a worst-case circumstance, “if somebody isnt actually favorable, we might be sending them to their death,” stated Dr. Valerie Fitzhugh, a pathologist at Rutgers University.
In early October, officials in Nevada purchased the states nursing homes to stop the use of 2 fast coronavirus tests till additional notification, pointing out issues about precision. A rash of incorrect positives had been uncovered, according to the directive, which had risked putting uninfected residents into systems with infected individuals, giving the coronavirus more chance to spread.
Missed or unsuitable treatment
Incorrect positives can also be disastrous from a treatment viewpoint, stated Linoj Samuel, a scientific microbiologist at Henry Ford Health System in Detroit. People with the influenza or Covid-19, for example, frequently reveal similar symptoms, but might just be evaluated for among them at a time. If a patient is given an inaccurate medical diagnosis of Covid-19, that person could be denied of treatment that might minimize their disease, or be given an expensive therapy that does little to speed their recovery.