Abbott became the latest company to release a COVID-19 diagnostic last week, pledging test turnaround times of as little as five minutes.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration granted the test emergency use authorization last week. It is meant to run on another Abbott product, the ID NOW platform, which can be used at physicians’ offices, urgent care clinics, and hospital emergency departments to deliver positive results in 5 minutes and negative results in 13 minutes. By using the ID NOW platform, Abbott says, the test will be able to take advantage of the largest molecular point-of-care installed base in the country.
The test should be available as early as this week, with Abbott announcing the manufacturing possibility of up to 50,000 tests per day.
“The COVID-19 pandemic will be fought on multiple fronts, and a portable molecular test that offers results in minutes adds to the broad range of diagnostic solutions needed to combat this virus,” Robert Ford, president and COO of Abbott, said. “With rapid testing on ID NOW, healthcare providers can perform molecular point-of-care testing outside the traditional four walls of a hospital in outbreak hotspots.”
As for ID NOW, the platform is a portable, lightweight device that uses molecular technology to get its results.
Beyond all this, the company continues to produce the already authorized m2000 RealTime SARS-CoV-2 EUA test. Between it and the newcomer to the field, Abbott expects to produce as many as 5 million tests per month as part of ongoing efforts to help the United States finally close the testing gap for COVID-19.