President Trump defended the ability of the US to conduct tests for coronavirus, despite medical workers saying they cannot test everyone who needs one.
“We're doing more than anyone in the world, by far. We are testing highly accurate tests, these are tests that work,” Trump said. “Well we’re doing, every day, and the word is exponential we are getting more and more and more, and now we have a new test that will be rolled out tomorrow or the next day and that’s going to take only a few minutes to see the result. And it's a highly accurate result."
Vice President Mike Pence later attempted to clarify why there is a discrepancy in the amount of tests that the administration said had been distributed and the amount of tests that have been conducted.
Pence said under the old testing system, tests were being sent out, but had to be returned to labs that could only tests a small number per day.
“I think that the misunderstanding early on was that there are many tests being distributed, many test kits being sent, but under the old system, the antiquated system those were being processed in state labs or at CDC that could only produce 30 to 50 tests a day," Pence said.
Dr. Deborah Birx, the task force response coordinator, also said she’s disappointed that Abbott Laboratories coronavirus test disbursed around the country are not being utilized.
“It is disappointing to me right now that we have about 500,000 capacity of Abbott tests that are not being utilized. So, they are out. They’re in the states. They’re not being run and not utilized. And now we have to figure out how do we create awareness,” Birx said during the briefing Tuesday.