FDA investigating test with false negatives

Coronavirus
Donald Trump

FILE – In this March 30, 2020, file photo, President Donald Trump opens a box containing a 5-minute test for COVID-19 from Abbott Laboratories as Stephen Hahn, commissioner of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, speaks about the coronavirus, in the Rose Garden of the White House in Washington. Federal health officials are warning about potential accuracy problems with the rapid test for COVID-19 used at thousands of hospitals, clinics and testing sites across the U.S., including the White House. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon, File)

WASHINGTON — Food and Drug Administration Commissioner Steve Hahn says it will be up to the White House to determine whether it continues to use a coronavirus test that has falsely cleared patients of infection.

Hahn Told CBS on Friday the FDA will keep “providing guidance to the White House regarding this test” but whether to keep using the test “will be a White House decision.”

The test is used daily at the White House to test President Donald Trump and key members of his staff, including the coronavirus task force. The FDA said late Thursday it was investigating preliminary data suggesting Abbott Laboratories’ 15-minute test can miss COVID-19 cases, producing false negatives.

Hahn told CBS the test is on the market and the FDA continues to “recommend its use or to have it available for use.” But he suggested if doctors or patients suspect they’ve received a false negative, they should do another test.

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