FDA issues emergency use authorization for saliva COVID-19 test

Posted at 6:14 AM, Aug 17, 2020
and last updated 2020-08-17 06:48:36-04

Health officials believe a quick and inexpensive coronavirus test might help the country flatten the curve.

Right now, the FDA is granting an emergency use authorization for a saliva test.

Officials say results can be determined in under three hours, and tests are expected to cost about $10 per sample.

The NBA helped fund the development of this test and uses it to test for non-symptomatic carriers.

According to Johns Hopkins University - this FDA announcement comes as the U.S. death toll for known COVID-19 cases passes 170,000.

Dr. Abdul El-Sayed, epidemiologist and public health expert, says that, "It doesn't need the same re-agents and swabs that have been the limiting steps to create testing at scale in this country. It really could be a game changer if we can deploy it."

A professor with Vanderbilt University School of Medicine, Dr. William Schaffner, stated, "I think it will take weeks, if not longer, for this test to become more widely available, but as it comes online, I think people will like it much better than the more intrusive nasal swab test."

Results from the COVID-19 tracking project say testing is down in 17 states but test positivity rates are up in 34 states.