Are False Positives Systemic Or Isolated?

Science with Dr. Doug

A false positive is defined as when someone is actually negative for a target, but the diagnostic test measures this person as positive for the target. All tests have a false positive rate, and it’s expected that this rate should be as low as possible.

This report from Connecticut is very curious, indeed (links below). Out of 144 tests that were deemed positive, only 54 (38%) of those were real positives and 90 (62%) were actually negative (false positive).

Scientists at Connecticut’s public health laboratory identified that a test produced by Thermo Fisher Scientific was connected to these false positive results. This test is being used in many labs around the US. It has been reported to the FDA and to Thermo Fisher Scientific, with no explanation for the cause as of yet.

It’s curious because there is always a negative control included in these tests. The negative control serves…

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