8th May 2020 Editorial by: Paul Carton
COVID-19 Testing Moves One Step Closer to Home
The LetsGetChecked "twin-track" Coronavirus test has received a major boost of $71 million in funding, allowing the at-home-health-test specialists to accelerate their plans to scale up its US and EU-based manufacturing supply of the kit and increase its lab testing capacity. The company is aiming to produce 100,000 kits per day by the end of the month.
The twin-track test which includes a rapid serology test and swabs, to be sent off for RT-PCR testing. This is currently only available for healthcare professionals, in a move to relieve pressure on over-stretched hospital screening services and speed up the identification of potential cases.
The lateral-flow rapid antibody test provides a result in 15 minutes. This to be performed in tandem with a PCR-based test, to be a valid diagnosis, as per instructions mandated by the World Health Organization, ECDC and the US CDC.
The PCR-based test requires the user to take an oropharyngeal and nasopharyngeal sample with a swab provided. This swab must be immediately placed in the viral transport medium, which is then to be sent on to Lets Get Checked's CLIA certified lab for RT-PCR testing (return prepaid shipping labels included). Results will be available in confidential format within days.
To maximize the accessibility to testing, LetsGetChecked is pricing the test at $129 per unit. This cost covers testing, express return shipping, lab analysis, physician review, nursing support and access to a LetsGetChecked IOS mobile app so patients can access results online.
The company is working with the FDA to have an emergency use application (EUA) approved for use by customers to test in the home. Unlike the healthcare professional kits, the direct-to-consumer kit will only contain the laboratory test using the nasal and throat swabs. It will be available to consumers in the home through LetsGetChecked.com, but will be limited to one test per order. However, until approved by the FDA for direct-to-consumer testing, the kit will not be available for purchase online.
In addition to COVID-19 testing, consumers can order a variety of physician-approved at-home health tests via LetsGetChecked.com or through partner retailers online with other in-store retail options expanding through 2020. Available tests currently include wellness testing and chronic condition testing, e.g. diabetes, cholesterol, and thyroid testing; cancer screening, sexual health testing, fertility testing, and pharmacogenomic testing. Once a test is purchased, users collect samples at home and send it back to LetsGetChecked's accredited facility at no additional cost. Confidential, accurate results are available online within a matter of days.
Throughout the process, consumers are connected with in-state, board-certified physicians to discuss any abnormal results and determine the best course of action for treatment and care. Consumers will also receive a call from a medical professional to discuss their results live, which can be conveniently accompanied by an e-prescription from a pharmacy of their choice.
Date Published: 8th May 2020
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