COVID-19 has been the new reality in 2020, every country in the world has had to deal with the pandemic in one way or another. Scientists have been hard at work to curb the virus and they came up with a new breakthrough, the first COVID-19 home testing kit referred to as Lucira COVID-19 All-In-One Test kit.
Testing for the virus has been a prevailing head ache, many people in the world are having a hard time accessing testing facilities, in fact, lack of sufficient testing has led to further spreading. With this new home testing kid, people can do it for themselves without having to queue in a health facility.
The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) issued an Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) for the home test. The Administration emphasised that the home kit is prescription only, meaning it’s not an over the counter kit. Apart from home use, it can also be utilized at point of care centers such as hospitals, care facilities and emergency rooms.
“The FDA continues to demonstrate its unprecedented speed in response to the pandemic. While COVID-19 diagnostic tests have been authorized for at-home collection, this is the first that can be fully self-administered and provide results at home. This new testing option is an important diagnostic advancement to address the pandemic and reduce the public burden of disease transmission,” said FDA Commissioner Stephen M. Hahn, M.D. “Today’s action underscores the FDA’s ongoing commitment to expand access to COVID-19 testing.”
People from the age of 14 and above are eligible to use the kit. It comes in fom of a nosal swab, the collected sample is then put in a test unit that has a light-up display. The display then show a negative or positive result in 30 minutes or less. The FDA advises that individuals who get a negative result but still experience the symptoms should consult a doctor. Those with positive results should self isolate as required by health guidelines. Doctors who prescribe the home testing kit should follow-up with their patients and take into account the results of the testing for tallying purposes.
“Today’s authorization for a complete at-home test is a significant step toward FDA’s nationwide response to COVID-19. A test that can be fully administered entirely outside of a lab or healthcare setting has always been a major priority for the FDA to address the pandemic. Now, more Americans who may have COVID-19 will be able to take immediate action, based on their results, to protect themselves and those around them,” said Jeff Shuren, M.D., J.D., director of FDA’s Center for Devices and Radiological Health. “We look forward to proactively working with test developers to support the availability of more at-home test options.”
Its now only a matter of time before we start seeing home testing kits available in other countries. We applaud scientists, doctors and all frontline personnel who are working towards bringing an end to the COVID 19 pandemic.