President Trump is wrong that greater testing is driving the coronavirus case load

If increased testing were the only reason for a surge in new cases, the percentage of positive tests should be dropping or leveling off.

June 29, 2020
Category: Fact-Checking

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There’s no doubt COVID-19 testing is on the rise.

Here in St. Petersburg, Florida, where I’m based, the line for drive-thru testing at a nearby hospital is regularly snaked around the block by 9 a.m. And last week in the U.S., the COVID Tracking Project recorded 2 million new tests and nearly 30 millions tests since the start of the pandemic.

President Donald Trump’s explanation for rising counts of U.S. coronavirus cases is that we’re testing more people for the virus.

On June 23, Trump tweeted, “Cases up only because of our big number testing. Mortality rate way down!!!”

While the number of coronavirus tests being conducted is rising over time, the positivity rate — which is the percentage of tests that come up positive for the virus — has also been rising since early June. And that undermines Trump’s argument.

Click here to read the full fact-check.

North Carolina Lt. Gov. Dan Forest claims state is one of four in country that hasn’t reopened gyms

Dan Forest, a Republican who is running for governor against incumbent Roy Cooper, accused Cooper of reopening business sectors arbitrarily, tweeting that North Carolina is one of only four states that hasn’t reopened gyms. This is True. Get the facts»

President Trump tweeted on June 23 that the COVID-19 death rate is ‘way down’

Deaths from the coronavirus have fallen consistently since their peak in late April, and have continued to fall in June even as the number of cases has risen. But experts say deaths lag behind the number of cases. So the trend may reverse. Read the fact-check»

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Alex Mahadevan is a senior multimedia reporter at MediaWise. He can be reached at amahadevan@poynter.org or on Twitter at @AlexMahadevan. Follow MediaWise on TikTok.