‘We are flying blind’: Fauci was warned in March 2020 of potential false positives in COVID-19 tests

White House coronavirus adviser and longtime federal infectious disease expert Anthony Fauci was warned as early as March of 2020 that tests widely used to diagnose COVID-19 could suffer from high levels of false positive results, a problem that was confirmed by the World Health Organization earlier this year. 

The warning was given in a Mar. 22, 2020 email to Fauci from Sin Hang Lee, the director of the Milford Molecular Diagnostics Laboratory in Milford, Conn. The message was part of a large batch of emails and other records recently obtained by Judicial Watch and the Daily Caller News Foundation.

In Lee’s message, he warns Fauci and several other doctors: “It has been widely reported in the social media that the RT-qPCR test kits used to detect SARS- CoV-2 RNA in human specimens are generating many false positive results and are not sensitive enough to detect some real positive cases, especially during convalescence.”

“Without a reliable laboratory diagnostic test, we are flying blind,” he wrote.

Lee in the message summarizes a proposal contained in an “attached letter” that was not included in the email batch. The summary itself, however, was redacted from the released email.

Reached for comment, Lee provided Just the News with a copy of the original email. In the redacted portion, the scientist proposes “to adopt or to develop a routine nested RT-qPCR protocol to generate a 398 bp amplicon as the template for Sanger sequencing to raise the sensitivity and specificity of the tests.”

Lee also shared the letter he enclosed to Fauci and the other physicians, in which — in addition to proposing the nested RT-qPCR protocol — he argues that RT-qPCR technology “is known to generate false positive results when used to detect influenza A virus and MERS-CoV, another Coronavirus.”

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