Tommy G. Thompson, former secretary of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and four-term governor of Wisconsin, who presented at NRHI’s Innovation Series, published in op-ed in STAT News discussing the ongoing need for COVID-19 testing.
“Public health officials agree on the most critical elements to reducing the spread of Covid-19: mask wearing, social distancing, frequent hand washing and, just as essential, access to rapid testing,” commented Thompson.
Further he pointed that “voluminous, rapid-result testing is effective only if it is coupled with a strategy for what to do with positive results.” As an interim president of the University of Wisconsin System, he used examples of the effectiveness of rapid-testing within the university systems. It not only helped controlling the spread of the virus, but it also “helped engender a culture of responsibility among students,” said Thompson.
Tommy Thompson concluded that what we learn from mass testing now will be crucial “to the development and execution of a national strategy for vaccine distribution, particularly one that can reach the most vulnerable populations.”