COVID Tests Show Shocking Error Rates. Are We Grading a Test Without the Answers?

A year after the pandemic began, the World Health Organization has changed parameters on coronavirus PCR testing. After a high rate of false positives, false negatives, and faulty data, one has to wonder if anyone knows what the hell they’re talking about.


Conflicting reports and moving targets about coronavirus testing is creating confusion and sowing skepticism, with some saying tests are “too accurate” and others suggesting accuracy falls well below 50%. A new guidance on testing and re-testing released by the World Health Organization has received very little attention.

reporting from the left side of the aisle


  • While most mainstream outlets did not report on the WHO report, Politifact used its platform to quibble over wording after conservative outlets used the adverb “grossly” in reporting the WHO’s new guidance on how to test for the coronavirus. Naturally, it rated the “claim” false.
  • The UK is attempting to roll out large scale use of a rapid test it says has “divided the scientific community”, but CNBC spends nearly its entire article defending the new rapid test and devoted a single sentence to critiques of the test’s accuracy.
  • Earlier this month The Washington Post kept up with the alarmism, saying many COVID-19 tests will produce too many false negatives, and that measures like masks, social distancing, and lockdowns can’t be ignored after a negative test result.
  • Estonian public broadcasting called the PCR test “too accurate” after evidence has revealed its sensitivity is far greater than is clinically helpful. 



  • The Jewish Times reported on the WHO’s guidance to more carefully interpret results and to order a second test in when results “do not correspond” with apparent symptoms, while also saying the contradictory results were present and known as early as last August.
  • Both the Gateway Pundit and Epoch Times were one of the few outlets to report on the change in WHO guidance, tying it to the election and inauguration of Joe Biden.
  • A doctor in Minnesota wrote an op-ed to frankly explain the problem of false positives, detailing the many types of tests, how they could be contaminated, and discusses how viral load and multiplication cycles work to create enough material for detection.


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© Dallas Gerber, 2021