An At-Home Coronavirus Test May Be On the Way in the U.S.

As cases of COVID-19 continue to climb in the U.S., there’s a new urgency to make sure there are as many tests as possible to diagnose people who have symptoms that might indicate an infection. Knowing if people are positive is important for guiding their next steps: self-isolation, avoiding contact with others, and, if their symptoms get worse, seeking medical care. To date, access to tests has been spotty at best across the country, and while more kits are now available than even a week ago, most are gene-based assays that take several days for commercial labs to process and produce results. That may change in about two months if the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) gives Emergency Use Authorization to the first blood-based COVID-19 test in the U.S. Scanwell Health, an at-home test company based in California, licensed the rights to a test developed by Chinese company Innovita, which was used extensively at the height of country’s epidemic earlier this year. “The advantage of a rapid test like we’re working on is that it can be performed completely at home by the patient,” says Dr. Jack Jeng, chief medical officer of Scanwell. “It can be widely scalable rapidly and quickly deployed.” That’s critical during an unfolding pandemic. In China, the test was approved by China’s Centers for Disease Control, and helped public health officials to keep pace with the burgeoning number of cases in Wuhan, at a time when gene-based ...
Source: TIME: Health - Category: Consumer Health News Authors: Tags: Uncategorized COVID-19 Source Type: news

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