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COVID-19 testing continues at UNLV, sheds light on future of the disease

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Posted at 8:26 PM, May 03, 2020
and last updated 2020-05-04 02:36:14-04

LAS VEGAS (KTNV) — The president of UNLV’s School of Medicine says it’s likely that there are a lot more people who’ve had COVID-19 than we know about, which is why testing for the disease is so critical for the future.

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The school has had its own coronavirus drive-thru testing site since March.

The site has already faced the same obstacles as other testing locations across the country, including problems trying to get tests quickly.

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“There has been more samples come in so we’re back up to 300 per day,” says Dr. Michael Gardner, UNLV School of Medicine. “Even the large labs had difficulty getting the large q-tips, the test swabs, getting the liquid that you stick the test swabs in.”

It’s a struggle that has now turned a corner, as Nevada moves closer towards reopening.

The conversations are also now turning towards the months ahead, as Dr. Anthony Fauci warned of a possible second wave of the virus during a White House coronavirus task force briefing.

“In the fall we will be much, much better prepared to do the kind of containment compared to what happened to us this winter,” said Dr. Fauci.

RELATED: New drive-thru coronavirus testing site to open in North Las Vegas

Dr. Gardner says getting antibody tests is the next big step in the battle, and as more testing becomes available, the hope is that it will ease fears, and allow the economy to bounce back.

“If people knew that there’s such huge number of people working at this locale who are already immune, they may be more likely to bring their business back, which is certainly what we need to get Las Vegas back,” says Dr. Gardner.

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