The CDC released six new possible symptoms of coronavirus, which include muscle pain and headache.
COLUMBUS, Ohio – Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine’s second COVID-19 test came back negative Thursday evening.
DeWine tested positive for the novel coronavirus on Thursday morning using a rapid test. That test was part of the protocol to greet President Donald Trump on the tarmac at Burke Lakefront Airport in Cleveland.
DeWine then returned to Columbus and took a second COVID-19 test from Ohio State University’s Wexner Medical Center. That polymerase chain reaction or PCR test came back negative late Thursday night.
First lady Fran DeWine and staff members also tested negative.
The first test was an antigen test. The second test was a PCR test, which looks at specific genetic material for the virus. It’s known to be more sensitive and accurate.
More: Which members of Congress have tested positive for COVID-19?
PCR tests for the governor, first lady and staff were run twice and came back negative both times. They were run on two different diagnostic platforms.
“We feel confident in the results from Wexner Medical Center,” DeWine said in a released statement. “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.”
Antigen or rapid tests aren’t prevalent in Ohio yet. DeWine announced on Tuesday that Ohio would soon acquire 500,000 rapid tests as part of a collaboration with five other states.
“We will be working with the manufacturer to have a better understanding of how the discrepancy between these two tests could have occurred,” DeWine said in the statement.
Mike and Fran DeWine plan to take another PCR test Saturday, out of an abundance of caution and at the direction of doctors. Those results will be released.
DeWine had planned to quarantine for 14 days at his Cedarville home. He already keeps a small circle of in-person contacts: his wife, Lt. Gov. Jon Husted, security personnel and a few staff members.
“I spend most days right here anyway,” DeWine said via videoconference from the front porch of his home. “I’m on the phone a lot. I’m on conference calls a lot.”
Ohio. Gov. Mike DeWine and First Lady Fran DeWine at a coronavirus briefing on June 23, 2020. (Photo: Office of Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine)
DeWine isn’t the first governor to test positive for COVID-19. Oklahoma Gov. Kevin Stitt announced he had the disease several weeks ago. Last month, DeWine’s state prisons’ director, Annette Chambers-Smith, announced she received a positive COVID-19 test result after feeling slight symptoms.
DeWine took some of the earliest aggressive action to combat the spread of COVID-19 in his state, one of the first five governors to close bars, restaurants, and wineries in March.
During the first few months of the pandemic, Ohio was reported as an early success story. The state gradually lifted its stay-at-home order throughout May and June and saw a plateau in newly reported cases, as well as a decline in hospitalizations.
In recent weeks, however, cases began to surge, with the state reporting more than 1,000 new cases per day for most of July.
“We’re going the wrong way,” Dewine said of the uptick in cases to NBC’s Meet the Press last month.
“We are at a crucial stage. We are at the point where we could become Florida,” he said, issuing a statewide mask mandate in late July.
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