Quest Diagnostics announced plans to make more than a half million nasal specimen self-collection kits for coronavirus testing available by the end of June, after obtaining an emergency use authorization for the product from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
Specimens may be collected at home or under supervision at the office of a health provider. The front part of the nostril is swabbed and specimens are shipped overnight by FedEx. There is no need for use of a frozen cold pack, Quest noted. Specimens are evaluated using the company's FDA-authorized reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) testing. Quest plans to prioritize giving access to the test to healthcare workers, first responders, and law enforcement personnel.
According to the company, the at-home collection kit has been validated in real-world studies.