As Virus Numbers Spike, FDA Approves 45-minute Coronavirus Test
The US Food and Drug Administration just announced emergency use authorization of a new on-site coronavirus test that could detect the virus in just 45 minutes.
The authorization was made Friday according to PR News Wire and tests will begin shipping next week, according to a statement from the company manufacturing the tests.
This comes after 1-in-5 Americans have been ordered to stay at home. Among those states are New Jersey, Illinois, California, and New York.
Worldwide, more than 278,000 people have contracted the virus and at least 11, 570 have died – according to a report by Johns Hopkins University.
The U.S. cases have surpassed 23,000 with nearly half of the cases in New York State.
“During this time of increased demand for hospital services, clinicians urgently need an on-demand diagnostic test for real-time management of patients being evaluated for admission to healthcare facilities,” Cepheid’s chief medical and technology officer, David Persing, said in a statement.
“An accurate test delivered close to the patient can be transformative—and help alleviate the pressure that the emergence of the 2019-nCoV outbreak has put on healthcare facilities that need to properly allocate their respiratory isolation resources,” Persing added.
Cepheid said they plan to begin shipping the test this week.
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New York Gov Pleads For Help From Healthcare Professionals
In a desperate plea for help, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo released an executive letter requesting help from health care professionals.
“We need the help of additional qualified health professionals and related professionals to supplement our hospital capacity on a temporary basis to treat seriously ill coronavirus patients including those that may need to be intubated,” Governor Cuomo said in his open letter.
As cases rise, our healthcare system will become exhausted.
This is why social distancing is so important. Because as we flatten the curve, that will relieve our hospitals and clinics. If Americans continue to congregate, the numbers will continue to balloon in a time when our hospitals are not equipped with enough staff or supplies to help.
Experts predict that within three-to-four weeks our healthcare system will collapse due to the overwhelming number of patients at once.
Governor Cuomo is requesting the following information for healthcare professionals:
- Date of last certification and license
- Last date of practice
- Role in last practice
- Contact information including location
- Current age
- Would you be willing to work in other parts of New York State?
- Describe your interest and ability to be able to provide your services to treat patients if the need should arise in the future.
To assist complete this survey: https://coronavirus.health.ny.gov/get-involved-how-you-can-help.
Cuomo also recently requested the nation to assist in the creation of more medical face masks. Now, fashion designer Christian Siriano has volunteered himself and his team of designers to sew masks for the health care professionals in New York.
“If @NYGovCuomo says we need masks my team will help make some. I have a full sewing team still on staff working from home that can help,” the “Project Runway” veteran tweeted on Friday, March 13.
Replying back Governor Cuomo ensured his city that their teams are working together. He replied via Twitter, “We’re in contact with @CSiriano. Appreciate his help so much. Who’s next? Let’s do this together, NY!”
Now, the designer and his team are waiting on the FDA to approve his prototypes. Late Saturday afternoon, he told his followers, “Thanks everyone for all the support. We are making waves and working on getting approvals before we start anything. It’s very important before anyone does anything to help, please make sure what you are making is safe and hopefully, FDA approved. We must be smart.