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Need a Coronavirus Test? Being Rich and Famous May Help


On Wednesday, it was announced that two congressman had tested positive: Representatives Ben McAdams, Democrat of Utah, and Mario Diaz-Balart, Republican of Florida. (Another Florida politician, Mayor Francis Suarez of Miami, has also tested positive.)

The N.B.A. has been at the center of the debate since two players on the Utah Jazz tested positive. The number of known positive results leaguewide has now grown to seven, including Kevin Durant of the Nets. But dozens more have been tested.

Adam Silver, the N.B.A. commissioner, acknowledged the criticism in an interview on Wednesday with ESPN. But he insisted the league sought tests at the direction of public health officials.

“Let me begin with the situation in Oklahoma City last Wednesday night,” Mr. Silver said. “The Utah Jazz did not ask to be tested. The Oklahoma public health official there on the spot not only required that they be tested, but they weren’t allowed to leave their locker room, which was for at least four hours after the game, where they had to stay, masks on.”

The league has disclosed few details on how it gained access to the tests.

Wendy Bost, a spokeswoman for Quest Diagnostics, one of the country’s largest commercial laboratories, said a variety of organizations had asked for help testing their employees, noting that Quest provided “an exceedingly small percentage of our overall collection kits to a small number of sports teams.” She said the company agreed to do so only for teams with at least one diagnosed case.

Quest, as well as LabCorp, another major diagnostic company, said tests were processed in the order they were received.

The N.B.A. on March 7 instructed all teams to identify a nearby facility they could enlist to conduct testing, according to a private memorandum obtained by The New York Times. But approaches by teams have varied, and some say they have not screened their players.



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