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As COVID testing plunges, cases begin creeping up

Testing for COVID-19 has plummeted across the globe, making it much tougher for scientists to track the course of the pandemic and spot new, worrisome variants as they emerge and spread (Source: “Pandemic gets tougher to track as COVID testing plunges,” Associated Press, May 10).

Experts say testing has dropped by 70% to 90% worldwide from the first to the second quarter of this year — the opposite of what they say should be happening with new omicron variants on the rise in places such as the United States and South Africa.

Reported daily cases in the U.S., for example, are averaging 73,633, up more than 40% over the past two weeks, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University. But that is a vast undercount because of the testing downturn and many tests are being taken at home and not reported to health departments.