The AT-Home Test Kit, which can be used to collect Test samples At Home, allows people to send a nasal swab sample to the company’s laboratory for diagnosis.
LabCorp’s test kit was granted an emergency FDA authorization in March, and on April 5, LabCorp contacted the FDA to request a modification to allow patients to use the test kit at home, CNBC reported.
LabCorp said it already had 60,000 at-home kits that would be given priority to health care workers and was expected to expand to other U.S. customers in the coming weeks.
The kit costs $119, requires users to be evaluated as suitable and complete a questionnaire on LabCorp’s website, LabCorp said.
Reuters reports that the United States has been trying to improve its testing capabilities, but that expansion has been hampered by a lack of professionals and personal protective equipment to ensure safety.
Collecting samples at home will reduce the risk of transmitting the virus to health workers, but there may be drawbacks, such as whether the tester has correctly collected the samples and sent them safely to the lab.
The FDA said it has worked with LabCorp to ensure that the data in its sample collection kit is safe and accurate, as it is in hospitals or other testing facilities.
LabCorp said there would be no difference in quality or results between the samples taken by patients and those taken by professionals, as long as the kit’s instructions were followed. Home kits come with cotton swabs that can be used to collect nasal samples, as well as biohazard specimen bags and overnight fedex shipping bags for mailing samples to the lab. The laboratory can obtain the results within one to two days after receiving the samples.
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