Why and How Mass COVID-19 Testing is Deadly
False Positives Cause Families to Underestimated Risk of Severe COVID-19, Cause People to Believe They Are Immune, and Fuel Re-infection Myths
In Feb 2020 - when the pandemic just weeks old - the CDC refused a test that had been adopted by over 40 countries. That test was a quantitative PCR test (qRT-PCR). Quantitative means that the test provided an estimate of the quantity of viral material present in the sample.
All CDC had to do was download the sequences and tell everyone around the US to use that test, and adopt a 1/10, or 1/100 sequencing confirmation to provide empirical control over the false positive rate.
There are two ways to do molecular diagnostics for pathogens. One way is to use the tests on populations that are, in fact, likely to have an infection. That would include (a) people who are symptomatic for COVID-19, and (b) people who have been exposed to confirmed cases of SARS-CoV-2 infection.
Note that these are not synonymous, in spite the logic error imposed on the public by CDC that evidence of infection with the SARS-CoV-2 virus is synonymous with coronavirus DISEASE.
The second way to do molecular diagnostics for pathogens is to screen people. Test anyone, anytime. This is safe if - and only if - the false positive rate of the test is zero - and if the evidence of infection is, in fact, synonymous with the disease.
A month after CDC refused the quantitative test, they re-defined “died with” as synonymous with “died from”. I had already called them out for the logic error of using non-quantitative PCR with a universal cycle threshold. I had contact the FDA and warned them that their failure to use negative control samples to make sure the kits were not amplifying target sequences from human DNA sequences through a well-known problem of non-specific amplification.
Thereafter, public health officials started messaging that their non-quantitative PCR approach had “zero false positives”, a claim that was easily disproven by a search of the scientific literature. One of the first studies was Basile et al, who correctly reported that at their empirical 11% false positive rate, the problem of false positives was serious because it’s always a serious problem when the prevalence of a condition is low.
Another line of evidence was a study of Marines conducted on a college campus, which studied the effects of isolation. The Marines bunked in separate rooms pairs, ate separately and did most training exercise outside. The virus proceeding to continue to transmit. The study authors concluded that mass testing was therefore necessary, but they also reported that 36% of PCR-positive samples could not yield a SARS-CoV-2 genomic sequence.
Dr. Sin Hang Lee (now a NAATEC Consortium Member) tried to sequence PCR-positive and PCR-negative samples provided to him as a reference set, and found 30% false positives and 20% false negatives. Reference sample sets are the sets used to ground-truth molecular diagnostics.
To make things worse, CDC then allowed physicians to overrule negative PCR results and report “presumed COVID” in total counts of COVID-19 “cases”.
In a study I sent to four journals of public health, I showed mathematically that increased testing under these conditions led to much higher false positive rates - meaning the false positive rate itself increases as more indiscriminate testing is conducted.
Incredibly, now we see the irrational voices for mass vaccination (in the direct face of the abject failure of the vaccine to reduce transmission and prevent hospitalization) call “vaccinate or test” - and Biden ordering 500 million rapid in-home tests. These are antigen tests that use antibodies in the kit to detect the presence of viral protein. People have posted photos on social media of tap-water testing positive - and pathogen specificity of these antigen tests is unknown. Washington State has ordered 5 million tests.
I’ve already gone over the math of the problem of false positives elsewhere, and FDA has even issued a warning on this problem for rapid antigen tests. But the current mass formation psychosis of “damn the torpedos, full steam ahead” means that we are in for a surge in false positives.
And that means COVID-19 deaths for people who watch their loved one “breeze through” COVID-19.
Imagine, for example, an 80-year old man who had a cold two weeks ago, has recovered, and decides to test. His result indicate that he is positive for SARS-CoV-2 infection, but it’s false. No one knows it was a false positive. He is asymptomatic, he now believes his is immune, and life goes on.
However, his wife - and the entire family - might think, via their personal, direct observation, that COVID-19 is not so bad. They might let their guard down, and might attend or hold home gatherings. Both the man and his wife become infected - and both die from bona fide COVID-19.
This scenario is not speculative - it’s a certainty.
Let me say it more clearly: Indiscriminate testing with sequence-based confirmation is reckless and irresponsible. Requiring a negative test for work or school is unthinkable: the numbers have muddied the counting, altered perception on risk of COVID-19, and leads to the false impression of safety due to natural immunity.
Unless a person has been in contact with someone who has a bona fide, confirmed SARS-CoV-2 infection (confirmed by Sanger sequencing), and/or are symptomatic, there is no reason to test. In fact, there is every reason to NOT test.
If a person is tested via PCR, they won’t be told your cycle number - nor the cycle threshold use to call the test result. The values are kept secret by the CDC, public health departments, medical physicians and testing companies - under the bullshit explanation of “proprietary information”.
I’ve made all of these arguments before, but the world was not yet ready to listen (Link below).
We need to put PCR in its place - as an amplification step in a process of confirmatory, gold-standard Sanger sequencing.
We are raising funds to fund Dr. Lee’s analysis of 100-200 samples of PCR-positive patients. The proposal is IRB approved. Can you help? Visit the IPAK website. We are 12% of the way funded - we need $150,000. Click here to pitch in.
Related Articles and Videos
Basile et al. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/33087255/
Marine Recruit Study https://www.nejm.org/doi/full/10.1056/nejmoa2029717
CDC’s Deadly Testing Fiasco Article
Follow the Science article
CDC’s Deadly Testing Fiasco (video works, click on Watch on Youtube to view it).
The testing here in Israel is absolutely out of control, and our "cases" are through the roof. 69% of cases have some amount of vaccines, 31% are unvaxxed. Pure chaos here this week.
There is no reason for *anyone* to test for *any* virus or bacteria because ALL of them are killed by mega doses of vitamin C, and other natural safe remedies. With sufficient vitamin D levels, nobody dies of covid (50-75ng/mL). Niacin flushes are also very beneficial.
You can learn more from Dr. Thomas Levy's book, Rapid Virus Recovery. Here's a pdf: https://madisonarealymesupportgroup.files.wordpress.com/2021/04/rapidvirusrecovery.pdf
I also recommend Doctoryourself.com for general health info.