WASHINGTON, D.C. – At today’s House Homeland Security hearing, Federal Emergency Management Administration (FEMA) Administrator Peter Gaynor attempted to defend the Trump administration’s inadequate national testing regime, stating that “we have enough testing platforms in the U.S.” despite widespread evidence to the contrary.
Gaynor’s statement comes amid nationwide problems with testing. Months after President Trump claimed that “anybody who wants a test, can get a test,” supply shortages, testing backlogs, and the lack of a comprehensive audit by the administration of the difficulties it has run into since March in getting states the resources they need has resulted in hours-long lines, more stringent requirements to be tested, and more than week-long delays in test results for Americans across the country.
The burden has fallen especially hard on communities of color, many of which have received fewer testing resources for populations that are largely Black and Latino — groups at particularly high risk of COVID-19 infection. And officials from LabCorp and Quest Diagnostics warned this week that the coronavirus is spreading too quickly in the U.S. for their companies to properly bulk up testing capacity — leaving the nation unprepared as the crisis continues to ravage the country.
“Anyone who has tried to get tested for COVID-19 knows how frustrating and haphazard the process is. If FEMA Administrator Gaynor is right that U.S. has ‘enough testing platforms,’ that is an indictment of the administration and its sheer failure to mobilize those resources,” said Kyle Herrig, president of Accountable.US. “Widespread access to testing is essential in order to reopen the country safely. Until the Trump administration recognizes its failure to disseminate testing resources properly, this problem will continue.”
More information on the nation’s ongoing failure to equip communities with the testing they need is available on WhereAreTheTests.com.