Health officials in Texas on Thursday subtracted thousands of COVID-19 cases from their running case count.
A notice posted on the dashboard maintained by Texas Health and Human Services blamed local officials.
“The San Antonio Metro Health District has clarified its reporting to separate confirmed and probable cases, so the Bexar County and statewide totals have been updated to remove 3,484 probable cases,” the alert stated.
“The local case count previously included probable cases identified by antigen testing but not those from antibody testing or other sources.”
The gold standard of testing for COVID-19, a disease caused by the CCP (Chinese Communist Party) virus, is PCR testing. Antigen tests are faster but are more likely to give false results, according to the University of Texas Health, San Antonio.
Testing data is diluted by the different ways states count cases and deaths, an Epoch Times investigation found.
The state’s COVID-19 count for Bexar County is now 17,458. According to Bexar County health officials, there are 21,546 cases as of July 15.
Out of those, 3,634 are probable cases, the county website says.
“Confirmed cases defined as cases that have a positive molecular (PCR/NAAT) test result. Probable cases defined as symptomatic cases that have a positive antigen (FIA) test result,” it states.
San Antonio Mayor Ron Nirenberg, an independent, told reporters last week that Bexar County would continue reporting the probable cases.
“From a science perspective and medical perspective, it doesn’t make any sense to not count these test results, as they are just as accurate in determining positive cases,” Nirenberg said. “This gives us a better sense of where the infections are so we can control it in our community and get back to some sense of normalcy.”
Still, the county would start separating probable and confirmed cases, he said.
An antigen test “is still considered an accurate positive,” added Metro Health Assistant Director Mario Martinez.
“Experts actually prefer an antigen test be used when you’re testing large populations. Now in San Antonio as we have more widespread prevalence of COVID-19, it’s definitely a good test to use in our community.”