By Rebecca Ballhaus
The Trump administration unveiled Thursday a $750 million deal to purchase 150 million speedy Covid-19 exams from Abbott Laboratories, a transfer that will considerably develop the nation’s capability for speedy testing.
The Meals and Drug Administration on Wednesday granted emergency-use authorization to the corporate for a $5 rapid-response Covid-19 antigen check that’s roughly the scale of a bank card. The check could possibly be administered in a physician’s or college nurse’s workplace and makes use of expertise much like residence being pregnant exams. It returns ends in about 15 minutes.
“It is a main improvement that can assist our nation to stay open, get People again to work and children again to high school,” White Home senior adviser Alyssa Farah mentioned.
The White Home announcement comes as President Trump is predicted to tout his response to the pandemic that has claimed roughly 180,000 American lives in his speech Thursday on the Republican Nationwide Conference, the place he’ll formally settle for the get together’s presidential nomination for the second time.
Abbott mentioned Wednesday it plans to ship tens of hundreds of thousands of the exams in September and expects to extend manufacturing to 50 million exams in October. The October complete can be roughly double the variety of exams carried out within the U.S. in July.
Abbott mentioned its knowledge present the brand new antigen check has demonstrated sensitivity — the p.c of optimistic instances a check precisely detects — of about 97%. Fast antigen exams are typically considered much less delicate than lab-based PCR exams.
The White Home has lengthy used a special speedy check created by Abbott to check the president and those that come into contact with him. The corporate has come beneath scrutiny for that check. It was compelled to revise directions to be used of the check when a preliminary research by a significant medical heart discovered that it often gave false detrimental outcomes.
Abbott shares rose nearly eight% Thursday, boosted by the emergency-use authorization and information of the massive White Home buy.
Write to Rebecca Ballhaus at Rebecca.Ballhaus@wsj.com