-written by: @dawnnnyy_
The U.S. Federal Drug Administration (FDA) has given Roche emergency approval for an antibody test that determines whether or not someone has been infected with the coronavirus.
The new test “has proven 100% accurate at detecting antibodies in the blood and 99.8% accurate at ruling out the presence of them,” the Swiss drugmaker, Roche, said, highlighting the test’s “near-perfect accuracy.”
Instead of a finger prick, the test requires blood to be drawn. Thomas Schinecker, the company’s head of diagnostics, commented, “If you take blood from a finger prick, you will never be able to achieve the same level of specificity that you will achieve … when you take blood from the vein.”
The tests are a key step to determining whether or not someone has immunity.
According to Reuters, “Governments, businesses, and individuals are seeking such blood tests to learn who may have had the disease, who may have some immunity, and to potentially craft strategies to help end national lockdowns.”
While antibodies typically offer some immunities, Schinecker ensured that there is still much to learn about COVID-19 before making definite conclusions.⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
Roche is planning to more than double production of tests from “about 50 million a month to more than 100 million a month by the end of the year,” Schinecker said.
Roche did not disclose a price for its test but said that it would be identical worldwide.