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Quick Tests to Be Given Out

President Donald Trump announced earlier this week that 150 million rapid coronavirus tests purchased by the federal government would be given out to nursing homes, colleges, and the states, the New York Times reports.

According to 360Dx, the test, Abbott Laboratories' BinaxNOW COVID-19 Ag Card, a point-of-care SARS-CoV-2 antigen test, will be distributed at no cost. In particular, it notes tests will go to nursing homes, assisted living facilities, and hospice care agencies, as well as to historically black colleges and universities as well as tribal nation colleges. Tests will also be provided to states and territories, it says.

But as Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health's Jennifer Nuzzo tells the Times, these tests, though numbering in the millions, are only a "drop in a bucket" in terms of the volume of testing that needs to be conducted.

Additionally, the Times notes that the Abbott test received Emergency Use Authorization in August, but was developed for use in people with COVID-19 symptoms, not asymptomatic individuals and Medical University of South Carolina's Krutika Kuppalli tells it the test's efficacy in that population is unclear.