(COLUMBUS, Ohio)—In a second test administered today in Columbus, Governor Mike DeWine has tested negative for COVID-19. First Lady Fran DeWine and staff members have also all tested negative for COVID-19.
A PCR test was administered to the Governor and members of his staff this afternoon. The PCR test looks for the specific RNA for the SARS CoV-2 — in other words, the genetic material specific for the virus that causes COVID-19. This test is known to be extremely sensitive, as well as specific, for the virus. The PCR tests for the Governor, First Lady, and staff were run two times. They came back negative the first time and came back negative when they were run on a second diagnostic platform.
We feel confident in the results from Wexner Medical Center. This is the same PCR test that has been used over 1.6 million times in Ohio by hospitals and labs all over the state.
The test administered this morning to the Governor in Cleveland, as part of the protocol required to meet the President, was an antigen test. These tests represent an exciting new technology to reduce the cost and improve the turnaround time for COVID-19 testing, but they are quite new, and we do not have much experience with them here in Ohio. We will be working with the manufacturer to have a better understanding of how the discrepancy between these two tests could have occurred.
Out of an abundance of caution, and at the direction of medical professionals, the Governor and First Lady plan on having another PCR test on Saturday. Results of these tests will also be released.