“For example, the support my administration is providing would allow every state to, on a very regular basis, test every teacher who needs it. This continues our critical effort to use testing to protect high-risk communities,” President Donald Trump said yesterday.
Trump added: “These new Abbott rapid point-of-care tests are easy to use and return results within just minutes.”
The administration in August struck a $760 million deal with Abbott for 150 million of the tests, and Reuters soon reported that an overwhelming majority would go toward supporting school reopenings and other tasks.
HHS Assistant Secretary for Health Adm. Dr. Brett Giroir said the government has already shipped 2.1 million Abbott tests to 7,600 nursing homes, 900,000 tests to assisted living facilities, 300,000 tests to the Indian Health Service, and 339,000 tests to historically black colleges and universities. Another 65,000 tests have gone to disaster operations in California, Oregon, Texas and Louisiana.
Yesterday, the shipment started of 100 million tests to state governments — with an initial 6.5 million tests going out this week.
Giroir said state governors and health officials, when briefed about the shipments, described them as a game-changer.
Abbott’s BinaxNow COVID-19 Ag Card is a speedy antigen test for the coronavirus that can be directly read off the testing card. FDA has compared the test’s design to some pregnancy tests. A healthcare provider swabs the patient’s nose and twirls the sample on a test card with a testing reagent added. After waiting 15 minutes, the card displays a result: one line for a negative result and two for a positive result.