The U.S. FDA has nudged the emergency use authorization (EUA) program forward once again, this time with a template for applications for tests that can be performed entirely at home, in the office and at schools. FDA Commissioner Stephen Hahn said in an accompanying statement that tests of this sort “will be a game-changer in our fight against COVID-19 and will be crucial as the nation looks toward reopening.”
The U.S. FDA detailed which kinds of SARS-CoV-2 tests are getting top priority, with access to rolling, rapid reviews for emergency use authorization (EUA) during the unfolding pandemic. The agency is aiming to authorize point-of-care and at-home tests to better distribute the use of testing in various locations. It also is looking at automated and high-throughput tests that can offer analysis of larger batches of tests at one time.
The U.S. FDA granted an emergency use authorization (EUA) for Quest Diagnostics Inc.’s self-collection kit for COVID-19. The kit allows individuals to collect their own specimens at home or in a health care setting.
New York-based at-home testing startup Letsgetchecked said Friday that the U.S. FDA has granted emergency use authorization (EUA) for its COVID-19 Sure-track Test for signs of active SARS-CoV-2 infection. The polymerase chain reaction (PCR) nasal swab test is for use by at-risk individuals in the home and delivers results within 24 hours of a sample being received by the company’s CLIA-certified laboratory.
The FDA has granted an emergency use authorization (EUA) for the home sample collection kit made by Austin, Texas-based Everlywell Inc., which can be run on two lab-developed tests. However, the agency has also shut down a Gates Foundation-backed effort in Seattle to develop another home sample collection kit even though the organization behind the effort has been authorized by state health authorities. The FDA announced the news about the Everlywell EUA with the stipulation that the user of the kit has completed an online questionnaire that is subsequently reviewed by a health care professional.
The U.S. FDA has expanded the emergency use authorization (EUA) for Rutgers University’s saliva-based COVID-19 test to include at-home use of Spectrum Solutions LLC’s SDNA-1000 whole saliva collection device, a development that underscores the need for wider testing as localities across the country emerge from lockdown and restart their economies. This is the first at-home option for saliva collection; the action comes just two weeks after the FDA authorized Laboratory Corp. of America’s polymerase chain reaction test for SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, to include the company’s Pixel self-collection kit for nasal samples.
The U.S. FDA has OK’d expanded labeling for Physiq Inc.’s continuous remote monitoring system, Pinpointiq, for use during the COVID-19 pandemic. The machine learning-based platform, including Multivariate Change Index (MCI), will allow clinicians to track physiologic changes in homebound, quarantined or high-risk patients with confirmed or suspected COVID-19 – freeing up hospital beds for the most severe cases and reducing exposure of doctors and nurses to the highly contagious disease.
The surge of interest in testing for the COVID-19 pathogen has led to some innovative tests and test strategies, including at-home tests. However, the FDA has indicated that it is wary of both at-home testing and specimen collection in other than supervised settings, a policy that is meeting with criticism from some quarters, but not all.
Everlywell Inc. stepped back from its announcement that consumers could access at-home testing for COVID-19 starting on March 23, 2020, following a U.S. FDA update that cautioned against fraudulent at-home tests.