A new COVID-19 test that can take about 15 minutes and that can be run without any lab equipment was approved by the FDA. The price would be of $5. The technology is simple – the same as they use in pregnancy tests.
The test is called BinaxNOW, and it was produced by Abbott. The company also wants to launch an app that will sync up with the tests, and give people with negative results a “digital pass.” They will be able to show the results on their phones.
The CEO of the company, Robert Ford, stated that this new test would give excellent results. Starting in October, they want to produce 50 million tests per month.
Jeff Shuren, director of the FDA Center for Devices and Radiological Health, stated: Due to its simpler design and the large number of tests the company anticipates making in the coming months, this new antigen test is an important advancement in our fight against the pandemic.”
People will be able to use this test in emergency rooms, in doctors’ offices, and in schools. The process is easy: it works with a nasal swab. The sample gets inserted directly into the BinaxNOW card, and there’s a colored line that should appear if the test is positive for the new virus.
How does it work?
This new test works on finding small proteins on the surface of the virus, and not in the genetic sequences of it. These tests look for protein – antigen tests. Scientists argue that this test might be less accurate and not the best way to control the pandemic.
The company stated that, if used correctly, the test can diagnose an infection of about 97.1% of the time. It can detect a negative result of 98.5% of the time.