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What happens when medical tests produce false negatives?

On Behalf of | Nov 23, 2020 | Medical Malpractice

Over the last eight months, medical professionals worked diligently to test and treat Americans across the United States. However, there was a learning curve to provide and process different types of Covid-19 examinations.

Many experts agree that testing is better now than earlier this year due to better waiting time, easier processing and also increase interest in coronavirus testing. However, the increase in tests doesn’t stop a small portion of the population from receiving false results.

The dangers of false negatives

False negatives are a huge issue for this specific pandemic due to the virus’s contagious spread and its ability to evolve over different strains. Many people may receive Covid-19 tests and receive a false negative; then, they will go out and spread it among other Americans.

There are a few factors that contribute to misleading results including:

  • Patients did not wait long enough between exposure and testing
  • The test did not reach the parts of your body where the virus concentrates
  • There was an error in the test itself to misclassify the profiles in your sample

These factors should not stop residents from taking tests, but they should help inform patients of the behind coronavirus testing and what they need to watch out for. If you are displaying symptoms after a false negative, consider retaking the exam or discussing it with your doctor. They may be able to help determine the right diagnosis.

Along with false negatives, tests could produce false positives and cost patients a significant amount of money. In those circumstances, you may have to seek the right claim in order to cover the lost wages and medical treatments if it was due to a hospital mistake.

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