By Peter Andrews, Irish science journalist and writer based in London. He has a background in the life sciences, and graduated from the University of Glasgow with a degree in genetics
It has been revealed that the standard tests being used in the US to diagnose Covid-19 cases are far too sensitive, with the vast majority of people marked down as being positive actually turning out to be negative.
Top US virologists have been stunned by revelations about the laxity of the US Covid testing regimen. It turns out that tests that deliver a simple binary “positive or negative” result are not fit for purpose, as they tell us nothing about the contagiousness of each person.
Data from three US states – New York, Nevada and Massachusetts – shows that when the amount of the virus found in a person is taken into account, up to 90 percent of people who have tested positive should actually have been negative, as they are carrying only tiny amounts of the virus, are not contagious, pose no risk to others, and have no need to isolate.
This means that only a fraction of the daily “cases” being reported so hysterically in the mainstream media are actual, bona fide Covid-19 sufferers, and need treatment and to separate themselves from others.
It’s a sensitive issue
So how could this have happened? The answer has to do with the sensitivity of PCR (Polymerase chain reaction) tests for Covid, which it turns out can be ramped up according to the taste of the testing companies. Most testing companies have chosen the outrageously high sensitivity limit of 40 PCR cycles – meaning that the DNA in a sample is exponentially increased 40 times in order to amplify its signal.
But using such a ridiculously sensitive test means that the faintest traces of a dead virus, or even leftovers from previous infections, can result in a positive. Professor Juliet Morrison, a University of California virologist, said that even a limit of 35 PCR cycles is too high, let alone 40. She said she was “shocked that people would think that 40 could represent a positive.” But apparently, pretty much everyone in the US Covid brain trust took exactly that on faith.
So the scale of the pandemic ‘problem’ is actually much smaller than we’ve been led to believe – about a tenth of what all the politicians and media have been using to justify the lockdowns, the quarantines, the mass testing. Some may be shocked that the scale of the problem is so much smaller than assumed. But for a seasoned ignorer of any and all statistics that contain Covid ‘cases’, there are no surprises here. The truth is, there was never any reason to be confident in such figures. The FDA has only now been forced to concede that they have no idea how different testing companies determine which the positive and negative tests are: they just accept whatever data they are given.
What these findings bring is absolute assurance that the testing to this point has been an utter waste of time, and that not one statistic concerning this pandemic – from cases to deaths to infection rates – can be believed. But it should not have taken some journalist to ask the right question to discover this: a bit of common sense would have been enough. What is it going to take for these professional virologists to drop their assumptions and models, and just start acting based on the facts at hand?
Scrap test and trace
It’s a virus so deadly, you need a test to tell whether you have it or not. So goes the refrain of many lockdown skeptics, Covidiots and anti-maskers, of whom I am an indignant supporter. Something has gone… not just wrong, but totally haywire… when the might of the world’s scientific establishment is trained with the zeal of a Witchfinder General on one particular microscopic particle. Not even a particularly dangerous particle; the latest data show it is the eighth most common cause of death in England, and it doesn’t make the top ten in Wales.
Meanwhile, in Wuhan, the original source of this disease, the pool parties are in full swing. They don’t seem to be too worried about PCR tests or contact tracing, or even the virus itself. The Chinese government says that their supreme lockdown was so awesome that they now have zero Covid: a biological impossibility. Maybe they just stopped testing, and decided to get on with their lives. Everyone else should take a leaf out of their book.