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The defiant Dr. Pliura

Friday, Apr 3, 2020

* News-Gazette

A physician who wants to offer drive-thru coronavirus testing for the public is searching for a new location after his plans to hold it Wednesday at a Champaign church were scuttled.

“We will be looking,” said Dr. Tom Pliura, a LeRoy-based doctor and lawyer who owns CampusTown Urgent Care in Champaign.

Pliura had planned to begin a daily drive-thru Wednesday morning at First Christian Church in Champaign, making thousands of COVID-19 tests available to the public — regardless of whether people have symptoms of the disease or not. […]

Pliura said he was irritated at what became of his plans, and he called the governor’s office for guidance about how to proceed.

I asked the governor’s office yesterday if Pliura had called and after checking for a few hours I was told nobody had talked to him.

* WICS TV outlines why this plan could be in violation of CDC guidelines

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), testing for COVID-19 is based on priority, starting with hospitalized patients and healthcare facility workers with symptoms.

Then, patients in long-term care facilities with symptoms, patients 65 years and older with symptoms, patients with underlying conditions with symptoms and first responders.

The third priority is for critical infrastructure workers with symptoms, individuals who do not meet any of the above categories with symptoms, healthcare facility workers and first responders and individuals with mild symptoms in communities experiencing high numbers of COVID-19 hospitalizations.

The CDC lists people without symptoms as a non-priority.


Pliura said he believes the number of COVID-19 cases at the University of Illinois is being kept artificially low.

“I also believe that the U of I doesn’t want it known that there are 10,000 foreign nationals over here that left in December before the break, came to their homeland countries and now returned prior to the travel ban and they had exemptions anyway and they brought a little present back with them,” Pliura said. “I guarantee you that if there’s testing done at the U of I, broad-scale testing, you are going to see a hot spot.”

[Champaign-Urbana Public Health District administrator Julie Pryde] disputes that. She said the U of I took aggressive action to limit COVID 19’s spread, including isolating students who traveled overseas.

* Also

“Isn’t all health care a money venture?” Pliura asked. “If you look at the tax returns of every hospital isn’t that a money-making deal?

“Aren’t we all in it to make a buck? Because I’m certainly not a not-for-profit.”

Most hospitals are not-for-profits.

* From Dr. Pliura’s Facebook page on March 26

Sky-is-Falling….Henny Penny….Chicken Little…..regarding claims of nationwide shortage of ventilators….

* March 28

Truth #4…..Re: Lack of Test Kits…the Media is saying there are not enough ‘Test Kits’ available……that is a bunch of malarkey…it takes 30-seconds to make a kit…SHARE THIS VIDEO

This video is the Gospel Truth…the whole truth and nothing but the truth….so help me God…I challenge anybody in the media to disprove anything here

Um, he’s not showing a test in his video, he’s showing a swab to collect samples for tests that are placed in a test tube. The actual tests are done at a lab, where there are indeed shortages and severe backlogs.

* This morning

We are performing case-by-case testing for Coronavirus at CampusTown Urgent care…631 E. Green St., Champaign, IL (217) 344-9909 Internet Pre-registration is required….go to: We hope to find a new location for broad scale public testing this morning

Someone asked in comments if he was “Testing for people with no symptoms to see if they are carriers?” Dr. Piura’s response

well, now the IDPH has asked me not to test people who don’t have symptoms….so during the registration process….you will be asked if in the last 7-10 days, have you had: a runny nose, cold symptoms, a cough, a scratchy throat, head ache, sore throat, fever, or if no fever have you felt warm….if you have any of those symptoms…I can test you…if you check the box ‘No’…then you will need to make an appointment with Champaign Public Health Department and ask their permission before we can test you….but if you tell me you’ve had one of the above symptoms…then I can test you…obviously I don’t know what symptoms you have had….and it’s all on the honor system…so you either check the box stating “yes”, I’ve had the symptoms….or you’ll need to go down to the Public Health Department and bring me back a note from the administrator allowing me to test you….I don’t think there is any licensed doctors down there…but I told them that I would not knowingly test anybody if they told me they have no symptoms…so you’ll either have to check the box as having had symptoms….or you need a note from Public Health…it is kind of like having a note from the teacher allowing you to go to the bathroom down the hall

Wink wink, nudge nudge. Get it?

- Posted by Rich Miller        

  1. - The Way I See It - Friday, Apr 3, 20 @ 12:41 pm:

    Going to medical school doesn’t preclude the possibility that you are also a moron.

  2. - Pot calling kettle - Friday, Apr 3, 20 @ 12:44 pm:

    ==there are 10,000 foreign nationals over here that left in December before the break, came to their homeland countries and now returned prior to the travel ban==

    If any of those folks were infectious, they returned in early January…timelines and all that. Plus, I’m pretty sure the virus was still a hoax back then.

  3. - South of Sherman - Friday, Apr 3, 20 @ 12:50 pm:

    Suddenly I’m not so bothered that this guy is out a million dollars in a shady loan to his political pals.

  4. - Ron Burgundy - Friday, Apr 3, 20 @ 1:01 pm:

    Um, all those “foreign nationals” were back on campus by 1/21, if they even went overseas at all over winter break. The campus pretty much cleared out on 3/13 before Spring Break so very few people are on it right now. If there was going to be an explosion of cases at UIUC based on returning students from winter break it would have already happened and it would not be possible to hide it, because the local medical facilities would be overrun. So much for that hypothesis, Doc.

  5. - Anon221 - Friday, Apr 3, 20 @ 1:14 pm:

    At some point the nation and the world is going to have a quick test for exposure (antibodies) widely available. Hopefully just a blood drop and not a blood draw. Those could be done in a drive-thru process to keep people out of hospitals, clinics, and ERs. It would be a relief just to know if you are positive or not, at least in the current time frame. We still don’t know enough about SARS-COVID-19 to even know if you can get a reinfection.

    I have a job where I am considered “essential”. I don’t have to be concerned about possibly bringing the virus home, because I live alone. But my father is in a couple of the high risk categories and lives nearby, and I’m the “kid” that is nearest. Every time I leave home to work, and sometimes that work requires me to drive hundreds of miles back and forth across Illinois, I worry that maybe this was the trip I picked the bugger up on.

    I take all the CDC precautions, and my employer updates those daily and more. I maintain distance from clients and we both use PPE and disinfectant products. So far, I haven’t had any symptoms.

    What wears on me, especially as cases increase in Illinois across all age groups, is what if I’m shedding this as I go? The most I’ve been able to stay at home per the EO has been 3 or 4 days in a row.

    I’m not saying Dr. Pliura is right or Director Pryde is right. I just would like to see more cooperation and less piecemeal or turf battles. It doesn’t help.

  6. - Soccermom - Friday, Apr 3, 20 @ 1:22 pm:

    why is this guy still licensed?

  7. - ArchPundit - Friday, Apr 3, 20 @ 1:29 pm:

    Am I to understand he is claiming to have tests and actually has cotton swabs and test tubes only?

  8. - Candy Dogood - Friday, Apr 3, 20 @ 1:36 pm:

    ===there are 10,000 foreign nationals over here that left in December before the break, came to their homeland countries and now returned prior to the travel ban===

    Oh. So I guess we shouldn’t be surprised about his relationship with GOP elected officials.

    For what it’s worth it was my experience with international students that they usually used winter break as a means for traveling around the United States domestically to see the country they were visiting rather than make a very expensive trip overseas. So this concern really isn’t a concern, but I think we should all take a moment to appreciate this dude’s grammar.

    Also — I just wanted to share that I’ve just now googled the guy. He’s an MD JD.

    He is an attorney.

    He has no excuse for not having done the due diligence before signing a loan document with a State Senator polling well in a gubernatorial race. An attorney that signs a contract for a million dollars with out checking to see who actually owes the collateral via easily accessible public information?

    This guy.

  9. - Demoralized - Friday, Apr 3, 20 @ 1:49 pm:

    Boy this guy is a piece of work. He expects to make some profit off of testing? Heckuva a guy. Certainly has good moral character /s/

    Based on what this guy has said he shouldn’t have anything whatsoever to do with testing because he is clearly operating outside of current guidelines. If he wants to participate and work within the current system, then fine, do that. We don’t need renegades right now and he is certainly a renegade.

    Not exactly a guy with high ethical standards.

  10. - Barry - Friday, Apr 3, 20 @ 1:58 pm:

    Suggesting that hospital and their directors/doctors are not engaging in a money making business just because they hide behind a “not for profit” label is both naive and misinformed.

  11. - The Captain - Friday, Apr 3, 20 @ 2:02 pm:

    At this point either take the tests from him and give them to people who need them or just let him conduct the tests. Testing asymptomatic people isn’t the highest priority but it does have value and it’s better than having the tests sit around unused while everyone argues.

  12. - Rich Miller - Friday, Apr 3, 20 @ 2:09 pm:

    ===either take the tests from him===

    He has swabs, test tubes and saline solution.

  13. - Bigtwich - Friday, Apr 3, 20 @ 2:25 pm:

    ==Going to medical school doesn’t preclude the possibility that you are also a moron.==

    Going to law school doesn’t - - - o, never mind.

  14. - northsider (the original) - Friday, Apr 3, 20 @ 2:41 pm:

    This gentleman is licensed by the State of Illinois?

  15. - StixHix - Friday, Apr 3, 20 @ 3:48 pm:

    ==He has no excuse for not having done the due diligence before signing a loan document with a State Senator polling well in a gubernatorial race. An attorney that signs a contract for a million dollars with out checking to see who actually owes the collateral via easily accessible public information?==

    I take back the comment I made on Wednesday which suggested Dr. Pliura has a brilliant mind. I think perhaps he once did. Sorry.

Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.

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