Elon Musk has tested positive for the coronavirus, he announced on Twitter. He also tested negative.
“Was tested for covid four times today,” Musk wrote on Thursday evening. “Two tests came back negative, two came back positive.”
Musk believes that “something extremely bogus is going on.”
But a mix of positive and negative results isn’t that surprising. Musk took a rapid antigen test from the medical technology company BD. According to the FDA, “positive results are usually highly accurate” with antigen tests, while false negatives are more common. So it wouldn’t be unusual for a patient with COVID-19 to get both negative and positive results.
Musk says he has also ordered a PCR test. This type of test is more accurate, but it will take about 24 hours to get the result.
Musk says he has “symptoms of a typical cold. Nothing unusual so far.”
Musk has opposed COVID restrictions
Musk has long argued that public health officials were exaggerating the risks of the coronavirus. In March, he predicted that the US would have “close to zero new cases” by the end of April. That proved way too optimistic.
When county officials ordered Tesla to shut down its factory in Fremont, California, in March, Musk resisted. Tesla finally shut down the facility several days after the order took effect. In May, he sued for the right to quickly resume operations.
In an April earnings call, he described lockdown requirements as “fascist,” calling on officials to “give people back their goddamn freedom.”
Musk’s positive results come at a time when the United States is suffering its third and largest surge in coronavirus cases. On Thursday, the number of new positive COVID-19 test results in the United States topped 160,000 for the first time.