Why Aren’t Cities Widely Testing for Coronavirus? – CityLab
Because she traveled through an airport in South Korea — where some 7,400 people have been diagnosed with Covid-19 as of Monday — McDow was concerned. A colleague who traveled with her came down with the same symptoms, she says, but in that colleague’s home in rural Indonesia, tests for the coronavirus were not yet available. To McDow’s surprise, getting tested in D.C. would be difficult, too.
Last week, McDow bounced around between her doctor, George Washington University Hospital, and the D.C. Department of Health. On Friday afternoon, she checked in at the hospital’s emergency room. No luck: Even after she tested negative for the flu, she said that the city’s health department declined to run her test for coronavirus. The reason? Since she never left the airport in Seoul, she was deemed at low risk for infection. (The Department of Health did not return requests for comment; George Washington University Hospital referred CityLab to the city.)