The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) announced on Saturday that it had approved the use of the first group test for coronavirus for up to four people. Testing more people at the same time speeds up testing and optimizes resources to find new cases faster.
“Today, the FDA issued an emergency approval for Quest Diagnostics for the Quest SARS-CoV-2-rRT-PCR test for the joint analysis of samples from up to four people under observation,” the agency said in a statement. .
This type of sampling “allows more people with fewer resources to be tested quickly.” If the samples are positive, this means that at least one of the people has the virus and the samples are therefore subjected to subsequent individual examinations.
“These types of tests are more effective in low-prevalence areas where the result is usually negative,” said the FDA. “Collective testing is especially important when the infection has subsided and we test more of the population,” said FDA commissioner Stephen M. Hahn.
The United States has confirmed more than 3.6 million positive and 139,302 deaths from the new disease. There are more than 14 million infections and nearly 600,000 deaths worldwide, according to the Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore.