False Positive COVID-19 Results a Major Problem for NFL

77 NFL players and team personnel had false-positive coronavirus test results over the weekend which could be a major problem during the regular season.
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77 NFL players and team personnel tested positive for the coronavirus on Saturday and Sunday, and all of them appear to be false positives. 

11 teams including the Bears, Bills, Steelers, Vikings, and Jets all kept their players out of practice after the initial tests indicated their players contracted COVID-19. However after further investigation, the NFL and BioReference Labs, the league’s testing partner, revealed there was a contamination at BioReference’s New Jersey laboratory. 

According to a statement by Dr. Jon Cohen, the executive chairman of BioReference labs, the false positives were, “caused by an isolated contamination during test preparation.” Cohen went on to say “possible causes and subsequent testing has indicated that the issue has been resolved. All individuals impacted have been confirmed negative and informed.” 

The NFL and Players Union are still finalizing their in-season testing procedures. Right now all team personnel is getting tested daily but that regulation ends on September 5th. The false-positive results could be a major problem for the NFL during the regular season. All of these players would have been ruled out of action if this happened on game-day. With some teams having more than 10 players originally testing positive,  some games may have been canceled or postponed due to the faulty test results, if this been on a Sunday during the season. 

Monday Night's NBA and NHL Playoff Action

There's some exciting post-season action in the National Basketball League and National Hockey League on August 24th. Four games on the schedule in the NBA including the Bucks and Magic where Milwaukee leads that series 2-to-1. Also at 2-to-1 is the Lakers over the Blazers and Rockets over the Thunder. The Indiana Pacers are on the brink of being swept by the Heat with Miami leading that series 3-0. Over to the NHL where the Islanders and Flyers face-off for their first game in a best of seven series. Also in action is the Stars and Avalanche with Dallas leading that series 1-0. For the latest best bets and gambling odds for the NBA and NHL, head over to SI.com/gambling.

Daily Finance and Business Update

There are over 23.4 million cases of the virus worldwide, with over 809,000 deaths. According to Johns Hopkins, the U.S. has surpassed 5.7 million cases with over 176,000 deaths.

Per the COVID-19 Tracking Project, there were 38,234 new cases reported Sunday. 611,382 new tests were reported. And 572 deaths were reported yesterday.

In a video on Twitter, Olympian Usain Bolt said that he was tested for COVID-19 and will be undergoing a quarantine. He noted that he is not symptomatic.

The Food and Drug Administration issued an "emergency use authorization" for convalescent plasma as a treatment of COVID-19 in hospitalized patients.

The FDA said that based on the scientific evidence currently available, it has concluded the antibody-rich plasma "may be effective" in treating Covid-19. It also concluded that the potential benefits outweigh the potential risks.

This treatment is not a new treatment, it’s been used previously to help COVID-19 patients and it’s been used during other epidemics--such as the H1N1 epidemic.

The Mayo clinic released data in June that showed that plasma treatment was safe following transfusions that included 20,000 people.

And back on Aug. 13, the Mayo Clinic and the National Institute of Health released a study--that included 35,000 patients--found that the plasma did have an effect on mortality for patients with severe COVID-19 cases. However, this study did not include a placebo group--which helps experts figure out just how helpful a treatment is, makes this harder for medical professionals and experts to fully understand the benefits and potential risks.

TheStreet's Katherine Ross contributed to this report.