Confidence In Kentucky Testing 'Waning,' According To GOP Lawmaker

Jul 29, 2020

Kentucky lawmakers pressed the state's acting epidemiologist on how the administration counts test results and deaths linked to COVID-19 Wednesday.

Credit AP Photo/Patrick Semansky

GOP policymakers voiced concerns with both the level of communication they're receiving from the administration and what they see as a lack of data transparency.

Senator Danny Carroll said confidence in testing is waning in the state and residents are becoming more wary of the statistics.

"There are stories going around about people who never took a test, they get a call that they're positive, and about numbers being counted twice," the Paducah Republican said.

The senator also asked whether all deaths in COVID positive patients are attributed to the coronavirus.

"Only if we think COVID-19 contributed to that death," acting Kentucky epidemiologist Dr. Doug Thoroughman responded, "not if they, say, had a car wreck and they were positive for COVID-19. We look very closesly to make sure the person was positive for the disease at the time of death and that they had signficant symptoms."

In more hard-to-pin-down cases, Thoroughman said a committee of physicians and officials at the state Department of Public Health examine further medical and testing records to determine the extent to which COVID contributed to the deaths.