The Missouri state health department has not been including results from antigen tests (rapid tests) when reporting Covid-19 case totals, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported Thursday.
State health department data requested by the Post-Dispatch showed "antigen tests caught an average of 648 positive cases a day in December and 644 positive cases a day in January — numbers that were not included in the state’s daily report of new COVID-19 cases," the newspaper reported.
Data analysis conducted by the Post-Dispatch showed that, "in January, the numbers would be 20% to 40% higher on any given day," if the antigen test results had been included in the daily case counts, according to the newspaper.
The Post-Dispatch noted that the CDC updated its probable cause definition in August to include positive antigen test results, even among asymptomatic people.
"Since August, the state has collected 52,683 positive results from antigen tests but not included them in the state’s tally of 443,838 cases," the newspaper reported.
When asked about the state's antigen test reporting, Lisa Cox, a spokesperson for the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services told the Post-Dispatch, "This has been an active discussion lately about how and when we will report antigen/probables publicly as they have continued to become a much larger portion of testing overall." She said, “It’s likely this piece will become part of our standard public reporting within the next week or so.”
CNN has reached out to the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services and is reaching out to other states to determine if Missouri’s counting methods are unique.
Note: These numbers were released by the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services and reported by the St. Louis Post-Dispatch and may not line up exactly in real time with CNN’s database drawn from Johns Hopkins University.