US must conduct 20M coronavirus tests per day to fully reopen, Harvard report says

The US will need to scale up to 20 million coronavirus tests per day by mid-summer in order to safely lift lockdowns, according to a Harvard panel of experts in health, science and economics.

The new report released from Harvard’s Edmond J. Safra Center for Ethics said that an approach that gradually ramps up testing will protect the economy from “cycles of opening up and shutting down.”

“It allows us to steadily reopen the parts of the economy that have been shut down, protect our frontline workers, and contain the virus to levels where it can be effectively managed and treated until we can find a vaccine,” the authors wrote in the “Roadmap to Pandemic Resilience” report.

Testing capacity should be at between 500,000 and 700,00 tests by mid-May to begin the reopening process, the group said.

Then by early June, that number will have to increase to conducting five million tests daily, the report said.

The testing capacity should increase until it reaches 20 million per day by mid-summer in order to “remobilize the economy” and regain some sense of normalcy.

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