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Report: Oklahoma used nearly 60% of its coronavirus testing capacity on the Jazz

Jesse Reed
NBA power rankings: Utah Jazz
Oct 14, 2019; Salt Lake City, UT, USA; Utah Jazz guard Donovan Mitchell (45) listens to teammate center Rudy Gobert (27) after a foul against the Sacramento Kings in the second quarter at Vivint Smart Home Arena. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Swinger-USA TODAY Sports

Many Americans are aghast at just how easily and quickly the Utah Jazz were able to be tested for COVID-19 after Rudy Gobert tested postive for the coronavirus.

After all, many who want to be tested and who have shown symptoms of COVID-19 are being denied, per NPR.

Yet, on Wednesday night when the stunning news of Gobert’s positive test caused a the NBA to suspend its season, every player on the Jazz, and other people Gobert had come into contact with, were almost immediately tested and received results within six hours, according to Sarah Todd of the Deseret News.

All told, 58 people were tested as a result of this ordeal, and Jazz star Donovan Mitchell also tested positive for COVID-19.

Now here’s the kicker. Oklahoma Health Commissioner Gary Cox is quoted as having said, “We have the capacity to run about 100 tests a day,” per The Daily Beast.

As noted by Robert Silverman of The Daily Beast, there’s a reason the NBA was given preferential treatment.

“The speed at which the NBA was able to get the test performed was partly thanks to existing NBA rules and regulations, which allow for the rapid identification of any potential medical issues. Should diagnostic warning bells go off, team trainers work with local physicians to determine the proper course of action, according to Laurence Burnsed, the Oklahoma State Epidemiologist who also spoke at the press conference.”

Whether that is fair or not is certainly up for debate.

What we know for certain is that the United States is lagging significantly behind all other developed nations when it comes to testing for COVID-19.

All we can hope for now is that this changes, and fast.