Published: Sat, March 21, 2020
Markets | By Otis Pena

US Company Announces First COVID-19 Home Testing Kits, Available Mar. 23

US Company Announces First COVID-19 Home Testing Kits, Available Mar. 23

Anxious about being able to get tested for coronavirus?

Everlywell, a home-testing company based out of Austin, Texas, developed a test for anyone who may be experiencing systems particular to COVID-19, according to TIME.

Now, an at-home test kit is set to be released on Monday from Everlywell. USA testing was initially limited to a test provided by the Centers for Disease Control and conducted at state and local public health labs, but the FDA began allowing certified labs, including commercial lab testing companies, to develop and distribute COVID-19 tests on February 29.

According to TechCrunch, Everlywell says it will have 30,000 at-home diagnostic kits available at launch next week.

"We're working hard to ramp up weekly capacity to test 250,000 Americans", says CEO and founder Juli Cheek in an interview with TIME.

After weeks of stalled testing, on February 29, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) issued a new policy to expedite the process for some laboratories to develop new diagnostic tests for SARS-CoV2, which allowed hundreds of labs to test for the virus. Everlywell will have their test available from March 23 onwards. The company sells dozens of lab tests to consumers to allow them to check cholesterol levels, fertility, and infectious diseases, including STDs.

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With 110 new cases added on 19th March 2020, the total number now stands at 900 and is expected to rise in the days to come. Italy's death rate of 8.6% among those registered with infections is significantly higher than in most other countries.

The price of the test is now $135, although Everlywell is reportedly working with the federal government toward a goal of offering the test at no cost.

Although they can be ordered online, a doctor is still required to prescribe the test.

The COVID-19 test will be shipped to customers with the supplies needed to collect a sample at home and shipping materials to mail the sample to a CLIA-certified laboratory partner.

"Private, secure digital results provided to all users within days..."

Individuals with positive results will be offered a telehealth consult with an independent board-certified physician from PWNHealth. Positive results will be communicated as mandated to federal and state health agencies.

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