How At-Home COVID-19 Tests May Help The Employer.
FDA Authorizes New At-home Rapid Test for COVID-19
As an employer, within the workplace, we want to do all we can to prevent the spread or exposure from COVID-19. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved a new over-the-counter COVID-19 antigen test—the Flowflex COVID-19 Home Test from ACON Laboratories—to increase consumer access to testing during the pandemic.
The new Flowflex test comes with swabs, a chemical solution, and a testing strip, and it provides results in as little as 15 minutes. Since March 2020, the FDA has authorized more than 400 COVID-19 tests and sample collection devices. However, this authorization is significant as it should boost the availability of rapid at-home tests and double at-home testing capacity in the United States.
ACON Laboratories plans to produce 100 million at-home tests monthly and double that to 200 million each month by February 2022. ACON Laboratories has not yet stated how much the tests cost.
What’s an Antigen Test?
A COVID-19 antigen test detects specific proteins in the virus. At-home antigen tests allow people to collect their nasal fluid or saliva sample and receive results typically in less than 30 minutes. Most at-home antigen tests are also authorized for serial testing, which tests the same individual more than once within a few days.
Due to antigen tests’ sensitivity, health experts recommend them to people who have symptoms since there is likely a more significant amount of the virus in their bodies. Availability and pricing vary, so check your major local retailer for at-home COVID-19 tests. To learn more about self-testing and reporting results, visit the Centers for Disease Control Prevention’s website. What’s Next? At-home diagnostic tests can play a critical role in the fight against COVID-19 in the United States. The market for home test kits will likely grow, so stay tuned for more details.
How An At-Home Test May Help Employers
As an employer, this could help prevent the spread of the virus within the workplace and provide information quickly to the person possibly affected. As fear due to the newer variants of the COVID-19 virus continues to seep into the workplace, having information can be our best defense. With the FDA continuing to approve at-home tests, this can be a viable option for those who are concerned they have symptoms or have been possibly exposed.