COVID-19 testing in Florida should focus only on residents experiencing symptoms or those with risk factors, Florida’s surgeon general said Tuesday when announcing a plan to revise guidance for COVID testing according to a report by Issac Morgan of the Florida Phoenix News.
At a press conference in Naples, Florida Surgeon General Joseph Ladapo argued against federal health authorities’ testing guidelines for COVID-19, even as COVID cases rise and the Omicron variant continues to spread.
Ladapo announced that the Florida Department of Health is “revising our testing and our testing guidance” for COVID-19 but said that “it’s not about restricting access to testing,” meaning Floridians will still be able to get tested at sites regardless of the new testing standards.
“We are going to be returning our guidance from the CDC’s current ‘test everyone all the time’…We’re scaling that back and we are coming back to something sensible,” according to Ladapo and his views. “We really, really want you to get tested if you have risk factors.”
According to the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s website, individuals are recommended to get tested if they have COVID symptoms or have been exposed to someone with the virus. In a press release last week, the CDC said, “for all those exposed, best practice would also include a test for SARS-CoV-2 [COVID-19] at day 5 after exposure.”
Ladapo continued: “And if you have no symptoms, please don’t get tested. You’re so unlikely to benefit from that and you could be harmed. We’ve seen with how children have been exposed and now they got to disrupt mom’s schedule and dad’s schedule. Again, this is guidance, you can still go get a test. I definitely understand you want to get tested before seeing mom or grandma or grandpa.”