The Tesla and SpaceX CEO said on Twitter that “something extremely bogus” was going on with the testing mechanisms for the novel coronavirus because he did four tests on the same day and received different results.
He wrote that he took the “rapid antigen test from BD,” with two tests coming back positive while the other two came back negative. Musk was likely referring to the rapid antigen test by Becton Dickinson and Co., which shows results in as little as 15 minutes, as reported by Business Insider.
“Same machine, same test, same nurse,” he said.
When asked by another Twitter user if he thought this was behind the rise in COVID-19 cases in the United States in past weeks, he suggested that “if it’s happening to me, it’s happening to others.” Musk added that he got the tests done because he experienced the symptoms of a “typical cold.”
He wrote that he’s waiting for PCR tests — the gold-standard for COVID-19 — from separate labs.
“Results will take about 24 hours.”
According to a Daily Mail report, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration recommended that any negative tests from Becton Dickinson should be followed up by a PCR (polymerase chain reaction) test, which usually takes around 24 hours to produce results. The 15-minute BD nasal swab tests, when negative, “do not preclude infection and should not be used as the sole basis for treatment,” the FDA stated.
Musk said he was waiting for PCR test results from different laboratories. According to Business Insider, it is not the first time the 49-year-old downplayed the efficacy of the testing system, as well as the gravity of the coronavirus pandemic. In July, the tech entrepreneur even went as far as saying that there were a “ridiculous number of false positive [COVID-19] tests.”
“This is a big part of why C19 positive tests are going up while hospitalizations & mortality are declining,” he tweeted back then, as per Business Insider.
He also said in September during a podcast appearance that he did not intend on taking a vaccine, nor would his family.
The COVID-19 pandemic broke new national records on Thursday, with 160,000 new cases recorded, The New York Times reported. However, Dr. Anthony Fauci, the country’s lead infectious diseases expert, said that the coronavirus will not be a pandemic for much longer, according to The Inquisitr.