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The Military Is Diagnosing More Than 100 Covid-19 Cases Per Day blog header image

The Military Is Diagnosing More Than 100 Coronavirus Cases Per Day

30 days ago, the Defense Departments instituted a travel ban and updated guidelines, requiring social distancing when possible but the amount of cases amongst service members are increasing daily.  As we near the end of April, the Department of Defense averaged between 100 – 200 new cases per day. The most recent count according to the DOD’s data shows 3,438 cases.

Senior Defense officials have acknowledged that asymptomatic carriers could be in the hundreds or thousands of COVID-19 cases, prompting a recent push for more thorough and readily available testing.

The most recent concern and increase in cases is coming from the USS Theodore Roosevelt,  The Aircraft carrier has been docked in Guam the last 3 weeks. According to the Navy’s most recent report, about 95% of the ship had been tested with only 678 positives.  Keep in mind that the USS Theodore Roosevelt holds around 4,860 service members.

More than half of those have either been asymptomatic, or developed symptoms after testing, Hyten said. In other cases, sailors who originally tested negative were re-tested and found positive about developing symptoms.

DoD’s labs are able to test about 9,000 samples a day currently, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff told reporters Tuesday, but the department wants to grow that several times over.

We’ve got an objective here of ramping that up to about 60,000 tests in about 45 days or so,” Army Gen. Mark Milley said.

More testing and updated guidelines for deploying units and new recruits would help the services reduce the spread of the virus.  

As of Monday, the Navy still has more confirmed cases than the other departments, thanks to thorough testing aboard TR. In total, they have 1,240 cases, up 22 percent over the weekend, from 1,017.

The Army is next, with 819 cases, up 13 percent from 726 on Friday. The Air Force added two cases over the weekend, coming to 330, while the Marine Corps added 14, for a total of 250.

The National Guard, which has mobilized tens of thousands of airmen and soldiers in support of local pandemic response efforts, has 672 cases as of Monday morning. Those grew 10 percent over the weekend, from 609.

Of those troops, 97 total have been hospitalized, while 859 have recovered from the virus.