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A Covid Testing Crisis, Again

The Daily

The New York Times

News, Daily News

4.597.8K Ratings

🗓️ 22 December 2021

⏱️ 32 minutes

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Summary

By the end of last year, if you needed a coronavirus test, you could get one. But when vaccines arrived, focus shifted. Many of the vaccinated felt like they didn’t need tests and demand took a nosedive. Testing sites were closed or converted into vaccination sites. And Abbott Laboratories, a major test manufacturer, wound up destroying millions. However, with the surge of the new Omicron variant, which is less susceptible to vaccines, demand for testing is back — and it is outstripping supply. Guest: Sheryl Gay Stolberg, a Washington correspondent, covering health policy for The New York Times.

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0:00.0

Crimin York Times, I'm Michael Wabaro. This is a Daily.

0:07.0

Today, as demand for COVID testing surges and vastly outstrips the supply of available

0:19.5

tests, we look at why shortages still remain two years into the pandemic and what President

0:27.4

Biden can do about it. I spoke with my colleague Cheryl Gastolberg.

0:45.3

It's Wednesday, December 22nd.

0:50.3

So, the way this day really begins is with me giving Michael Simon Johnson a better mask

1:00.0

than the light blue surgical one he had. Ooh, that is a fine fitting K and 95.

1:05.0

Yeah, you can tell this is the real deal. Okay.

1:09.2

Okay, so it is around 840 AM and we are standing outside of a care cube COVID testing

1:17.4

clinic on Courts Street and Wycoff Street in Brooklyn. And the line is quite long. It's

1:26.8

about 40 something people on this line. And you can tell that people know they are going

1:30.4

to be here for a really long time because they are prepared. They have their coffee and

1:36.0

their snacks as a woman in the front doing jumping jacks, jumping up and down to stay

1:39.6

warm. There's a mother reading a board book to a not very happy child. This is a really

1:45.8

long line. I mean, this is a dishearteningly long line. It's going to suck.

1:55.1

Can we talk to people from the near times? Sure. Do you have a minute or some of the

1:58.2

near times? I just want to talk to people about long lines and COVID testing.

2:02.0

This is stupid. Okay, tell me. This is stupid. The test takes literally

2:06.8

less than 60 seconds. I don't understand why I'm sitting on it for two hours.

2:10.4

I mean, look at it. The line is going to be a Starbucks in a minute. Hi, my name is Eliza

2:18.0

Reinhardt. Corridor Eione. And...

2:20.4

Hi, I'm Eione. Sam. Sam. I am 26 years old. I'm a law student. Sam from the neighborhood.

...

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