U.S. testing for the coronavirus is dropping even as infections remain high and the death toll rises by more than 1,000 a day.
It's a worrisome trend that officials attribute largely to Americans getting discouraged over having to wait hours to get a test and days or weeks to find out the results.
An Associated Press analysis found that the number of tests per day slid 3.6% over the past two weeks to 750,000, with the count falling in 22 states. That includes places like Alabama, Mississippi, Missouri and Iowa where the percentage of positive tests is high and continuing to climb, an indicator that the virus is still spreading uncontrolled.
The U.S. is approaching 5 million confirmed cases of the coronavirus, far outpacing other countries. The reasons are obvious: Americans are resisting taking steps to avoid getting infected. Many of the hot spots are chalked up to large gatherings, from big house parties and large no-mask weddings to crowded bars and restaurants.
The U.S. has had more than 155,000 people die from the virus in just a matter of months. It’s been fueled by a perfect storm of factors: continuing to gather in droves, resistance to wearing masks and a patchwork quilt of approaches to containing the virus by county, state and federal governments.