Will 15-Minute Coronavirus Test Be Available Soon?

By: - March 26, 2020

A U.S. company has submitted for approval a point-of-care coronavirus test that delivers results in 15 minutes, according to Vice President Mike Pence, the leader of the White House coronavirus task force.

“This will be the kind of test where you can go to your doctor, you can get the test done there at your doctor and have the results in no more than 15 minutes,” Pence told Thursday’s daily press briefing. “

Abbott Laboratories has submitted the test to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for approval and the task force will address the approval and efficacy of the product during Friday’s briefing, Pence said.

Also, Pence confirmed over 552,000 coronavirus tests have been conducted in the U.S. as of Thursday morning. With a world-high 83,144 confirmed cases to date, per Worldometer, that means roughly 15% of Americans who have been tested for coronavirus actually have the virus. The other 85% have flu-like symptoms or perhaps known contacts to confirmed coronavirus cases.

The U.K.’s Independent reported Wednesday, new 15-minute home test kits for coronavirus would be made available to the British public within days, according to a Public Health England (PHE) director.

Thousands of tests will be sold in drug stores or delivered by Amazon to people with symptoms who are self-isolating. The Independent said that could begin as soon as next week.

Matt Hancock, the health secretary, said the government bought millions of the tests on Tuesday and is ordering millions more. These antibody tests call for pricking a finger and analyzing a drop of blood in a device that the outlet said resembles a pregnancy test.

One limitation of the quick tests: It will only tell the person if they have had the virus, not if they currently have it.

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