On Wednesday, President Donald Trump said that he views the U.S. number of COVID-19 cases as “a badge of honor” during his first cabinet meeting since the virus outbreak in the U.S.

When asked by a reporter to comment on the fact that the U.S. has now reached the largest number of coronavirus cases in the world, the president said that he saw it as a positive thing.

“So if you’re testing 14 million people, you’re gonna find many more cases,” he said, referencing the number of tests performed nationwide.

“Many of these people aren’t very sick,” Trump said, “but they still go down as a case.” The president urged people to put those numbers in perspective. “So when we have a lot of cases, and we’re one of the largest countries on Earth. I don’t look at that as a bad thing. I look at that, in a certain respect, as being a good thing, because it means our testing is much better.”

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Trump concluded by saying that he considered the U.S. numbers “a badge of honor” – it should be read “as a great tribute to the testing and all of the work that a lot of professionals have done.”

According to a global data chart by Oxford University, the U.S. ranks 16th when it comes to tests per 1,000 people, right behind New Zealand, Russia, Iceland and Canada. While the U.S. may lead in terms of the total number of tests, it still lags behind many countries as far as tests per capita are concerned.

Harvard Global Health Institute Director Ashish Jha reported that Americans are only getting one-third tests as opposed to what they should receive to allow the country to safely reopen.

“The U.S. needs more than 900,000 tests every day to safely open up again. We are doing about a third of that,” said Dr. Jha last week.


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