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Maryland Gov. Hogan says officials have ‘moved on’ from coronavirus testing, are focusing on treating the sick

Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan said Friday the federal government has been unable to keep up with the demands for testing for the coronavirus and the state of Maryland is now focusing on treating sick people.

In an interview on MSNBC, Hogan acknowledged the United States is “behind” on testing for the virus.

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"Yes, we have a problem,” the Republican governor said. “There’s not enough tests. We’re dealing with that crisis right now in every single one of our states.”

Hogan said the country is trying to ramp up testing capacity, but cannot keep pace with the spread of the novel coronavirus.

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As of Friday afternoon, there were 18 confirmed cases in Maryland. The state has stopped announcing how many people have been tested for the virus.

"It’s just not going to be fast enough,” Hogan said of increasing testing capacity. “The real concern for us right now really isn’t about testing. It’s about stopping the spread. … Quite frankly, at some point, we’re not going to be arguing about the testing. We’re going to be taking care of sick people.”

Hogan, the chairman of the National Governors Association, said he and fellow governors have shared their concerns about a lack of testing with the White House.

“There’s concerns among all of us about what we don’t have,” he said. “They are not going to be able to get the tests ramped up in time. … I don’t believe they can ramp up fast enough. We’ve moved on from testing, quite frankly, to other things right now.”

Hogan said the state was now more focused on limiting the spread of the disease through preventative measures and closures, while ramping up hospital capacity.

State officials announced Thursday they were closing public schools for two weeks, and Hogan said he was activating the National Guard and limiting access to senior centers and the Port of Baltimore, among other measures.

"Rather than talk about what they didn’t do and why the hospitals aren’t ready, why the tests aren’t ready, I just want to say, ‘What can we do right now?’” he said.

Baltimore Sun reporter Emily Opilo contributed to this article.

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