NewsRegion N Palm Beach County

Actions

Infectious disease doctor in Palm Beach County believes everyone should be tested for COVID-19

Supply of coronavirus testing kits still a problem
Coronavirus testing in Hawaii laboratory
Dr. Leslie Diaz
Posted at 3:46 PM, Apr 01, 2020
and last updated 2020-04-01 17:52:31-04

NORTH PALM BEACH, Fla. — Testing kits for coronavirus are still limited, which means there are asymptomatic people with COVID-19 who don't know they are infected.

"The asymptomatic individuals, we’ll learn a lot from them, so everybody should get tested. That's in the perfect world," said Dr. Leslie Diaz, an infectious disease specialist.

MORE: Latest news on the coronavirus

Diaz said the reality is that there aren't enough kits. Currently, she said the kits are being prioritized for those with symptoms, people who are 65 and older and those with have underlying conditions.

A few days ago, Michael Green of Palm Beach County said his wife was admitted to the hospital and tested positive for coronavirus.

With him being a part of the vulnerable population, his primary doctor tested him. On Tuesday, he found out he is also positive but has experienced no symptoms.

"That's the real danger in things. People don't know they have it. Plus, they are not testing people who are feeling fine. Just like me, I'm feeling fine," said Green in a phone interview.

RELATED: Infectious disease specialist in Palm Beach County outlines what's working

Another COVID-19 patient said Monday, a week after he was released from the hospital, he was given the all clear but was never retested.

"I think it's very important to know that the individual is not spreading virus anymore, especially if that individual is going to be coming into contact with a lot of individuals or is in the health care system or is a first responder. I think we need to know that," said Diaz.

During a Facebook live interview Tuesday, Diaz explained, if you do show symptoms, almost always you will get a fever, even if it's a low grade one, and a cough.

"It can hit anybody from young kids to older individuals, and we are seeing younger patients, especially in the hospital in the ICU, fighting for their lives," said Diaz.