Man buys PCR device to test guests for COVID-19 before his New Year's Eve party

Originally published at: Man buys PCR device to test guests for COVID-19 before his New Year's Eve party | Boing Boing


Yeah, I want to party with that Dude.


I had Christmas with my vaccinated family. Negative PCRs before. Positive PCRs after. Infection rate 8/10 for attendees so far.

Most common symptom is headache and/or runny nose.

Have a safe NYE, mutants.


We’ve debated asking my inlaws to take a test before coming over on NYE. Mainly because several of them are not the most cautious, but they are all vaccinated. Eventually we decided on no, but it was a long talk.

The conversation must be happening elsewhere in the family though because when we went to the local clinic for boosters yesterday (yes, I know it won’t be ready in time for NYE, but getting them to go was the hard part), there were two of my spouse’s family members there with their families also getting it. Family reunion around the booster shot - it’s a Norman Rockwell painting waiting to be made!


Man, I feel lucky my cousin started showing symptoms on Christmas Eve… 12 hours later, we would all have been together preparing for family Christmas dinner and we would likely all have gotten it. As of now, it’s just them and their partner (we just straight up cancelled the whole thing Christmas morning out of caution).


Of the 8/10 of my family who are now PCR positive for covid, the only one of us who had a really bad time (body aches) was unboosted.


It’s not entirely clear from the article whether this party will be outdoors, but I hope so. The article does include this line:

If it had indicated that the party would be indoors I would have noted that outdoor propane space heaters and fire pits are relatively cheap compared to a PCR machine.


The technique of using a PCR machine is not hard, and some folks have even done it in repurposed sous vide setups. At the start of this, we should have used the defense act to crank the things out.


Angus says the testing will cost his family around $1500.

Very likely less than the cost of the stay in an ICU bed.


Unfortunately the headline is inaccurate.

That test doesn’t use PCR it uses “Isothermal nucleic acid amplification assay”.

Perhaps it’s more accurate than the antigen tests that are most home tests, but its -not- a PCR test.,or%20without%20symptoms%20or%20other

The headline ‘man buys a bunch of home tests’ is far less interesting.


He actually said that if he could have FOUND any home tests he would have used them. They are completely out where I live (Ohio) and from what i hear they are out just about everywhere else as well.


The Cue test that he used =is= a home test.


PCR tests aren’t the same as the OTC rapid antigen tests.

Or he could just, I dunno, not have a fucking party right now.


The Cue test is neither an antigen test nor a PCR test. It is something else.


Yeah molecular tests are not PCR tests.

And they’ve only recently become available. Though from my reading they appear to nearly as accurate as PCR.

But they hold the promise of faster results and more practical home testing.

The Cue whatever kits are crazy expensive, and seem to be targeted at businesses that are already regularly providing tests for employees.

The only other one that seems to have an emergency approval are the kits from Detect.

The hub is $35 $39 (I caught mine on sale) and tests are around $50 each. I did pick up a hub and one test as tests seem to be getting kinda short and i figured it’d be good to have.


Covid tests are like pregnancy tests. Take one too soon, and it won’t show positive. Get a negative result and you can still fuck around immediately afterward and get knocked up.


Some lucky lady is going to be checking out his spreadsheets!

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Seems fucking obvious, huh?

Is he dressing up as Vincent Price, because this is how you get the Masque of the Red Death.


One of the challenges with comparing these test is also the sampling done with the swab. Home users don’t tend to sample deeply enough to get the highest sensitivity. So look for how the sampling was done I.e. nasal or nasopharynx
(the swab goes almost to your ear which isn’t a process for the untrained) in the validation packet and what it was compared to best understand the real world performance.

Re the small number of approved rapid molecular tests, another challenge with these new non cycling amification tests is that they tend to be really expensive per test. So they are great for some applications but just not cost effective for high test burdens. The cue pricing seems pretty reasonable for home tests since rapid antigen are hard to get in my region anyway.

For rapid anitgen tests swabbing your cheek then your nose appears to be generating higher sensitivity. I have seen some side by side comparisons where the +cheek was positive and the shallow nasal alone was negative. (I should add these are side by sides done by MDs not home users)


Seriously. Had a friend who took a rapid test before a family Christmas function. Six hours later, he went home and decided to take another test (though this is a really poor testing methodology!), and it came up positive. He thought it might be a false positive, but then it got backed up by a PCR.