Healthcare

Roche says FDA has authorized at-home rapid COVID-19 test

AP-Andrew Harnik

Roche announced Friday that the Food and Drug Administration has granted its at-home COVID-19 test emergency use authorization. 

The test, which uses a nasal swab sample, can produce “accurate, reliable and quick results in as few as 20 minutes,” the company said in a statement.

The test will be available starting in January. Americans have struggled to get tested during the recent surge in cases driven by the omicron variant, finding themselves stuck in long lines for public testing and encountering shortages at pharmacies.

The antigen test is able to detect the highly contagious variant, according to Roche.

“The COVID-19 pandemic continues to shed light on the critically important role that rapid self-testing plays in empowering individuals to protect their personal health and the health of their families and communities,” the Swiss firm’s CEO, Thomas Schinecker, said in a statement.

The Biden administration has announced plans to purchase 500 million COVID-19 rapid test kits and distribute them for free in January.

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