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Lots More Tests

There is an increased push for COVID-19 testing in the US, the Wall Street Journal reports

"While we're in the process of immunizing the American people, we must keep our guard up," Admiral Brett Giroir, assistant secretary for health at the Department of Health and Human Services, said at a briefing last week, according to the Journal. "You can expect more at-home and screening testing, like before you go to work, before you travel."

The Journal adds that HHS estimates suggest there were 183 million available COVID-19 tests in December, the highest of any point in the pandemic. Further, it reports that a Rockefeller Foundation analysis indicates the US could perform 70 million COVID-19 tests a week by mid-January and 200 million tests a week by April. Further, some infectious disease physicians, epidemiologists and others have called on Congress to support wider antigen testing, according to the Journal, though it notes the field is split on their use among people without symptoms.

It further notes there have been record-high numbers of COVID-19 cases, hospitalizations, and deaths in December, and that the seven-day average for new daily cases in the US is more than 214,000.