Local health professionals weigh in on at-home COVID-19 test kit

National

ALBANY, N.Y. (NEWS10) — Since the beginning of the pandemic, health officials have stressed the importance of access to timely testing for the coronavirus.

While home testing has been on the market for sometime, the FDA has approved a first of its kind rapid self test, that could show results in 30 minutes or less.

“I think the home testing kit is an exciting addition to our ability to identify COVID,” explained Jeffrey Brewer, Associate Professor at Albany College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences.

Steve Moore, a pharmacist and Chairman of the Pharmacist Society of the State of New York agrees that Lucira COVID-19 all-in-one test kit could be very beneficial. However, he adds that he still has many questions regarding the how this test will be distributed, the price, and how accessible it is.

“Are we going to be able to order this at-home test for a patient? Or are they going to have to go to a more traditional primary care physician such as a doctor, nurse practitioner, or a PA?”

Dr. Nosa Lebarty, Chief Medical Officer at Central Med Urgent Care Center, also is in favor of increased access to testing, but he too, has some concerns including possible user error.

“Now telling them to self-swab is gonna take a lot of convincing, and at times that could also lead to inadequate results,” stated Dr. Lebarty.

According to the New York State Department of Health, this test isn’t expected to be available until the spring of 2021, and
health care providers who prescribe the at-home test, will be required to report all results to public health authorities.

“This new opportunity to test yourself at home is very exciting,” said Brewer. “There will be some ups and downs, but over the course of time, we will get this figured out. You will keep hearing information about it from your pharmacists and your physicians, your nurses and others to help you under stand this.”


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