Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine tested positive for coronavirus with an antigen test. But when he took a standard test, it came back negative.By Andy Sheehan

PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – One test showed Ohio Governor Mike DeWine positive for coronavirus — another showed him negative. It’s a case that shows the problem with COVID-19 testing in America.

As KDKA’s reports have shown this week, testing in America is a mess. One test is reliable but takes too long to get the results. The other one is quick but there are doubts about the results.

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Planning to meet with President Donald Trump, Ohio Governor Mike DeWine wanted to be sure, and sure enough, this quick diagnostic test known as an antigen test showed him to be positive with COVID-19. But Thursday night the governor’s office announced the standard-used test had determined he did not have the virus.

For the cost of $90 dollars you can get an antigen test and results in 20 minutes at this iCare Urgent Care In Murrysville. But the DeWine case raises serious questions.

UPMC’s Dr. Alan Wells says the medical center does not use use the antigen test, saying it delivers both false negative and positive results.

Andy Sheehan: “In layman’s terms, they are not reliable.”
Dr. Wells: “I would not use it to rule you out, and if not suspected of having COVID, I would not use it to rule you in.”

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But while the more widely used test reads the DNA of the virus and is considered more reliable, there are long delays in getting results nationwide.


The commercial laboratories used by Quest Diagnostics and pharmacies like CVS are backlogged with cases from the southern and southwestern states. Results can take more than two weeks, rendering them useless.

This week KDKA spoke with Lori Berlinghof, who has waited three weeks without a result.

“I just find it really alarming. I don’t understand how is this benefiting the country. How is that making anyone safe? And it’s such a waste of money,” she said.

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And so there are problems associated with both of these tests. Right now, health professional prefer to use the standard tests and are trying to increase capacity to clean up this backlog.