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Old 05-23-2020, 10:52 AM
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CDC Lumping Together Active and Recovered Testing Data


The idiots at the CDC have been mixing together testing numbers from active COVID-19 cases with serology (antibody?) tests. Here is a semi-paywalled article:

https://www.nytimes.com/2020/05/22/u...tests-cdc.html

Epidemiologists in the article seem to think this is disastrous, since you want to trace active cases separately from recovered cases, maybe?

For the doctors and epidemiologists here -- how big of a screw-up is this?

For the rest of you -- do you think this was done on purpose to inflate our testing number or just incompetence?

I think this was done on purpose to satisfy this administration's need to show how much testing we're doing in order to try and open things up again. However, given the anti-science nature of this administration, it's possible that many of the good scientists at the CDC have left.
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Old 05-24-2020, 09:53 AM
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It's not just the CDC; some states are playing the same games with the testing data. At least in the case of Virginia, it was done for political reasons. From https://www.theatlantic.com/health/a...rginia/611620/ :

Quote:
Originally Posted by Clark Mercer, Chief of Staff to Governor Northam
If another state is including serological tests, and they’re ranked above Virginia, and we are not, and we’re getting criticized for that, [then], hey, you can’t win either way. Now we are including them, and our ranking will be better, and we’re being criticized.
The COVID Tracking Project, which is run by some of The Atlantic staff members, believe that at least two other states are also combining data to inflate their numbers; see https://covidtracking.com/blog/antibody-data-reporting .
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Old 05-24-2020, 01:12 PM
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Not sure how much is was done with intent to mislead ... Hanlon's razor may apply.

That said, conflating a small number of antibody tests in with the PCR results seem to me to be the least of the reasons why absolute number of tests done and fraction positive is of currently very limited value.

I have a hard time believing that many epidemiologists were actually "stunned" ... or were using those aggregated figures as the actual inputs for any models they are building. I'd actually be stunned by the latter!
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Old 05-24-2020, 04:05 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DSeid View Post
Not sure how much is was done with intent to mislead ... Hanlon's razor may apply.

That said, conflating a small number of antibody tests in with the PCR results seem to me to be the least of the reasons why absolute number of tests done and fraction positive is of currently very limited value.

I have a hard time believing that many epidemiologists were actually "stunned" ... or were using those aggregated figures as the actual inputs for any models they are building. I'd actually be stunned by the latter!
OK, thanks. The reaction words in the article probably over-played the epidemiologists actual position. Pretty shitty reporting.
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