State Health Department To Report Antigen Tests In Daily COVID-19 Update

Monday, September 7th 2020, 7:00 am
By: Caleb Califano

The state health department will begin including results from antigen, or rapid, tests along with the standard tests in its daily update.

They say guidelines from the Center for Disease Control have changed. Before, the CDC asked the state epidemiologist to separate the antigen test results into a possible-case category.

Because of this, Oklahomans may see a rise in cases starting this week. State Epidemiologist Jared Taylor said with the expected spike, there will be "interpretation" on how much these numbers will show an increase in transmission, compared to being just a reclassification.

“We didn’t like the perception that we may be minimizing them or dismissing them,” said Taylor.

Groups like the Oklahoma State Medical Association are applauding the decision.

"Good medicine requires good data," Association President Dr. George Monks said. "So, this is really welcome news that these rapid antigen tests are becoming more available."

Only antigen test results from September 1 and on will be included in the state's COVID-19 case totals.