A medical company is revealing a coronavirus test that can tell if someone is infected in as little as five minutes, and is so small and portable it can be used in almost any health-care setting, the foreign media reported on Saturday.
Abbott Laboratories plans to supply 50,000 tests a day starting April 1, said John Frels, vice president of research and development at Abbott Diagnostics.
The molecular test looks for fragments of the coronavirus genome, which can quickly be detected when present at high levels. A thorough search to definitively rule out an infection can take up to 13 minutes, he said.
Abbott has received emergency use authorisation from the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) “for use by authorised laboratories and patient care settings,” the company said.
“This is really going to provide a tremendous opportunity for front-line caregivers, those having to diagnose a lot of infections, to close the gap with our testing,” Frels said. “A clinic will be able to turn that result around quickly, while the patient is waiting.”