San Diego County Deals With COVID-19 Test Shortage

A testing shortage across the country is also affecting San Diego County.

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The San Diego County Board of Supervisors revealed Monday there is a shortage in COVID-19 test supplies, and said the county will now start prioritizing symptomatic people, health care workers, first responders, and essential workers

“This is a really tragic situation where I don’t see that we’ve made progress,” said Encinitas physician Dr. Georgine Nanos.

Dr. Nanos said even private practices like hers are struggling to get their hands on tests.

“COVID-19 tests usually come in two to three days, we were told weeks ago that we may never get them and that they have no update as to when they might arrive,” she said.

This news is also upsetting for the owner of Players Sports Grill in San Marcos, Ted Semprini.

“Being here every day and dealing with the public every day, you don’t know who comes in here. You want to say you know them, but you don’t know where they’ve been and what they’ve been doing,” said Semprini.

Out of an abundance of caution, Semprini said he's tried to get a coronavirus test, but since he's showing no symptoms he's been denied.

“It’s just unfortunate that we’ve taken that big of a step back,” said Semprini. “People are trying to do their due diligence to get tested and they’re saying ‘Sorry it’s not going to happen.’”

Certain employers require their employees get tested before reporting to work, and this is also affects the number of testing kits out there.

“There will be somebody that won’t get tested who needs it and I’m not going to be the guy to take that one out,” said Semprini.

It's going to get worse in terms of testing access

Dr. Georgine Nanos

Dr. Nanos said access to testing is only going to get worse, which she said will greatly impact undeserved families who are already struggling to get healthcare in the first place.

“It’s very disappointing to see that after all this time we haven’t made any progress in the testing landscape,” said Dr. Nanos.

San Diego County leaders also acknowledge there is a backlog in processed tests. They've cited major delays in appointment times and how it can take more than a week to get results in some cases.

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