**Sunday evening and Michael Mendoza is backtracking furiously...**
A week after we put the pieces together and started asking questions regarding the reliability of the rapid tests schools will be using, he is acknowledging that the test they are using is **NOT FDA APPROVED** and has only been given **Emergency Authorization for use in SYMPTOMATIC PATIENTS ONLY**.
After consulting with one of our group’s physicians earlier in the week, Dr. Clayton Baker, and gathering information regarding this test from the manufacturer & FDA, we learned that this testing method in a low prevalence population **will most likely produce many FALSE POSITIVES.**
THAT'S RIGHT - MANY FALSE POSITIVES & LOTS OF UNNEEDED HEADACHES FOR FAMILIES. IT IS A DISASTER!
See SHOCKING pictures below to see what we learned and Dr. Michael Mendoza & New York State didn't tell you...
--Test is for those who are exhibiting symptoms
--Test is for those who have been evaluated by a provider & test warranted
--Test does not differentiate between different strains of SARS (so you may not even have Covid-19)
--Test should be done using drainage from your nose (because you should be sick to use this)
In follow up we reached out to Senior Regulatory Counsel at the FDA. She indeed confirmed what we suspected was true:
Bottom line with Mendoza's new fancy flow chart -- if your child is tested and tests positive with this rapid test, we recommend **DEMANDING a confirmatory PCR test before that child is considered a positive case. DO NOT "ACCEPT RAPID ANTIGEN TEST AS POSITIVE!!!!" YOU ARE NOT REQUIRED TO QUARANTINE as this test is NOT approved for asymptomatic testing by FDA.** Do NOT simply accept this test as the final result!
They are unreliable and your county health commissioner knows it!
See tweets below from @DrMikeMendoza on Twitter:
Response from our Physician, Dr. Clayton Baker:
**The medical paper Dr. Mendoza cites to support his testing method does not do so.
**First, the paper is a PREPRINT and has not yet been peer-reviewed. We all remember how other not-yet-peer-reviewed studies have held up during COVID. Not very well.
**Second, the study suggests the test may be useful if the prevalence of the disease is at least 5%. I don't think anyone believes 1 in 20 Monroe County school kids have active COVID-19 at the moment.
**Third, the study states this test may be useful in patients with HIGH VIRAL LOADS. Again, I question that Dr. Mendoza or anyone else thinks many asymptomatic school children fits this description.
**In the humble opinion of this experienced reader of the medical literature, the study Dr. Mendoza cites does not support his methods. This whole testing of asymptomatic school kids seems to this MD (and many others I know) as a classic example of fishing in the wrong pond.
** I've heard a number of authorities state outright that they are intentionally testing low-prevalence populations to drive down our case positivity rates. At first glance, this may seem OK. But it raises a fundamental question: If COVID-19 is still a four-alarm fire type of emergency, the LAST thing we should be doing is gaming the system. On the other hand, if authorities are willing to test low-prevalence populations to drive down numbers, doesn't that demonstrate that they realize this is a CHRONIC problem that needs to be managed, and no longer a dire emergency requiring drastic measures?