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US lab unveils portable 5-minute COVID-19 test

AFP
Published : Mar 28, 2020, 11:08 am IST
Updated : Mar 28, 2020, 11:08 am IST

The emergency product could be in the market next week

A US based company has designed a portable coronavirus testing process that delivers results in 15 minutes. (Photo: Abbott Labs)
 A US based company has designed a portable coronavirus testing process that delivers results in 15 minutes. (Photo: Abbott Labs)

Washington: A US-based lab has unveiled a portable test that can tell if someone has COVID-19 in as little as five minutes, it said in a statement Friday.

Abbot Laboratories said the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) had given it emergency authorization to begin making the test available to healthcare providers as early as next week.

The test, which is the size of a small toaster and uses molecular technology, also shows negative results within 13 minutes, the company said in a press statement.

"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," said Abbot president and chief operating officer Robert Ford.

The test's small size means it can be deployed outside the "traditional four walls of a hospital in outbreak hotspots," Ford said, and Abbott is working with the FDA to send it to virus epicenters.

The test has not been cleared or approved by the FDA, and has only been authorized for emergency use by approved labs and healthcare providers, the company said.

Tags: abbott labs, coronavirus test kit, five-minute test