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I don’t usually point to preprints, or papers released without peer review, but this one on medRxiv, the preprint server for health sciences, is interesting:

“For COVID-19-like viral parameters, a test with 40% false negatives and immediate result might reduce transmission as well as a test with no false negatives and a 3-day waiting time.

Testing is, of course, vital to dealing with a pandemic – you can’t control a disease if you don’t know where it is. But as we all know from the past year, having to wait a few days for the result of your test, so you can decide whether to travel or visit grandma, makes it almost useless.

Very fast tests exist but are less accurate. This paper did a statistical look at how different levels of speed/sensitivity would affect models of disease spread.

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