Fox35 News initiated an investigation into Florida’s high COVID positivity rate, and found that the labs were told to ONLY report positive numbers, and didn’t factor in the negative ones. The positivity numbers released to the Florida Department of Health were wrong.
Orlando Health was reported as having a 98% positivity rate, when it was actually only 9.4%.
“That number is not correct, I’m not sure where it came from,” data being reported by the state. It was reported that our percent positive was 98 percent. I’m still trying to track down how that information was communicated to the DOH.” Dr. George Ralls, Orlando Health
— Robert Guaderrama FOX 35 (@FOX35Robert) July 15, 2020
Two major hospital systems in Orlando confirm errors on @HealthyFla #COVID19 report. I am asking the State to explain what happened. @GovRonDeSantis #Florida @fox35orlando #FOX35 https://t.co/hPmuQeVSzx
— Robert Guaderrama FOX 35 (@FOX35Robert) July 14, 2020
After FOX 35 News noticed errors in the state’s report on positivity rates, the Florida Department of Health said that some laboratories have not been reporting negative test result data to the state.
Countless labs have reported a 100 percent positivity rate, which means every single person tested was positive. Other labs had very high positivity rates. FOX 35 News found that testing sites like one local Centra Care reported that 83 people were tested and all tested positive. Then, NCF Diagnostics in Alachua reported 88 percent of tests were positive.
How could that be? FOX 35 News investigated these astronomical numbers, contacting every local location mentioned in the report.
The report showed that Orlando Health had a 98 percent positivity rate. However, when FOX 35 News contacted the hospital, they confirmed errors in the report. Orlando Health’s positivity rate is only 9.4 percent, not 98 percent as in the report.
The report also showed that the Orlando Veteran’s Medical Center had a positivity rate of 76 percent. A spokesperson for the VA told FOX 35 News on Tuesday that this does not reflect their numbers and that the positivity rate for the center is actually 6 percent.
So what is a positivity rate? And how does it play into the current panicked narrative of Florida’s big “spike?” If every single person tested for COVID-19 tests positive that would make the 100% mark. But that is not statistically possible. There have to be people who test negative- and if the labs have not been reporting those to the Florida Department of Health, that’s how you get skewed results. It’s also how you create panic.
Featured photo: screenshot via Fox35