White House coronavirus adviser Andy Slavitt announced today that the government has awarded a $231-million contract to an Australian company to ramp up U.S. production of a digitally enabled rapid COVID-19 home test that doesn’t require a prescription.
The test kit, which was recently authorized by U.S. regulators, is produced by Australian manufacturer Ellume. The kit includes a sterile nasal swab for users to swam themselves, a dropper, processing fluid, and a Bluetooth-connected analyzer that can be used on a smartphone app where the results show up on in about 15-20 minutes.
The user-friendly test, which is suitable for ages two and older, has correctly identified 96% of positive samples and 100% of negative samples in individuals with symptoms.
Ellume plans to construct a manufacturing plant in the U.S. and deliver 8.5 million tests. No delivery time frame was given.