The first test for analyzing samples collected at people’s houses for the CCP virus received emergency approval from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
The CCP (Chinese Communist Party) virus, a novel coronavirus that emerged from mainland China last year, causes COVID-19, a disease that’s killed tens of thousands of Americans.
Laboratory Corporation of America’s test will let people use a swab in their nose, package the sample, and mail it to LabCorp for testing.
The testing kit is called Pixel by LabCorp.
“We worked with LabCorp to ensure the data demonstrated from at-home patient sample collection is as safe and accurate as sample collection at a doctor’s office, hospital or other testing site. With this action, there is now a convenient and reliable option for patient sample collection from the comfort and safety of their home,” Dr. Stephen Hahn, FDA commissioner, said in a statement.
“Our at-home collection kits are designed to make it easier and safer to test healthcare workers and first responders during this important time,” LabCorp CEO Adam Schechter said in a statement.
LabCorp expects to make the home collection kits available to consumers in most states in the coming weeks, according to the FDA. People will only be able to obtain the kits with a doctor’s order.
LabCorp said the kits will be made available to healthcare workers and first responders before others. A website the company created asks people to complete an eligibility survey to see if they’re eligible for the kit. The kit and associated costs, including shipping, run $119.
The kits are not available in Maryland, New Jersey, New York, or Rhode Island.
The kits include a Q-tip-style cotton swab that patients will use to collect a sample from their nose. The FDA is discouraging using other cotton swabs to obtain the sample, citing concerns with sterility and cross-reactivity.
The approval is only for LabCorp’s test and not for other at-home collection kits.