FDA raising concerns over accuracy of tests at new COVID testing kiosks

SEATTLE — If you got a certain kind of COVID-19 test, the Food and Drug Administration said the results could be wrong.

This is connected to new COVID testing kiosks that went up before Christmas in Seattle, which use Curative tests. The FDA is worried that some of the tests being provided by the city might be telling people the wrong results.

“People like, deserve reliable testing,” one woman told KIRO 7.

“Well, it’s kinda sad that we didn’t even know about the testing capabilities, and then to find out it’s not a good test – that’s too bad,” another woman said.

KIRO 7 first told you about Curative’s testing kiosks in December, when the city installed three to provide thousands of additional free tests daily in underserved communities. However, weeks later, the FDA issued a warning saying Curative’s COVID test was at risk of false negatives.

“I think if the FDA has some basis for saying that, then they should not be trusted,” said Paul Hart of Seattle.

The FDA said Curative’s test is only meant for people showing COVID-19 symptoms, and they think that could be contributing to inaccurate results.

KIRO 7 asked Hart if that makes him a little bit more concerned about testing in the future, and he said, “Yes, sure.”

The warning makes people like Hart think twice about blindly trusting COVID tests. However, many others KIRO 7 spoke to said it’s the opinion of federal officials they do not trust.

“Are the false negatives being proven with positives? Like, how are they finding that data,” Caledonia Gerner asked a KIRO 7 reporter.

Maeve Talamantes said, “I would be skeptical of the FDA.”

While it is unclear how many tests were affected, many cannot help but feel it’s better than not getting tested at all.

“Yeah, just not at this place. I think tests are really important,” Gerner said.

“Don’t tear the entire testing community with one company or one instance,” Hart said.

The city of Seattle responded to the FDA’s warning and said that all self-swab tests run the inherent risk of false negatives because a professional is not administering the swab. They also said the kiosks will stay up for now.