Gates-backed at-home COVID tests await approval as U.S. FDA OKs separate kit
(Reuters) - An at-home coronavirus testing project in Seattle backed in part by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation remains in limbo as U.S. regulators on Saturday announced approval of a separate home-based sample collection kit. The Seattle Coronavirus Assessment Network (SCAN), which aims to monitor the spread of the novel coronavirus in the region, this week said it was suspending its testing of patient samples collected at home after the Food and Drug Administration tightened guidelines to require emergency approval first
(Reuters) - An at-home coronavirus testing project in Seattle backed in part by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation remains in limbo as U.S. regulators on Saturday announced approval of a separate home-based sample collection kit.
The Seattle Coronavirus Assessment Network (SCAN), which aims to monitor the spread of the novel coronavirus in the region, this week said it was suspending its testing of patient samples collected at home after the Food and Drug Administration tightened guidelines to require emergency approval first.
The Gates Foundation in March said it was providing technical assistance for SCAN, which had been approved by regulators in Washington state, one of the first U.S. states to be hit hard by the outbreak. Bill Gates has also privately funded SCAN, according to the foundation.
On Thursday, SCAN in a statement said it has been in talks with the FDA since March 1 and initiated its request for emergency use authorization (EUA) on March 23, submitting data on April 13. "We are actively working to address their questions and resume testing as soon as possible," it said.
Representatives for the Food and Drug Administration did not have an immediate comment on SCAN's status. Representatives of King County Health Department referred questions to SCAN, which did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Separately, the FDA on Saturday approved a standalone at-home sample collection kit for Everlywell Inc, a health and wellness company, which launched its kit in March.
(Reporting by Maria Ponnezhath in Bengaluru and and Susan Heavey in Washington; Editing by Matthew Lewis)
This story has not been edited by Firstpost staff and is generated by auto-feed.
By Robin Emmott and John Irish | BRUSSELS/PARIS BRUSSELS/PARIS France and Germany will agree to a U.S. plan for NATO to take a bigger role in the fight against Islamic militants at a meeting with President Donald Trump on Thursday, but insist the move is purely symbolic, four senior European diplomats said.The decision to allow the North Atlantic Treaty Organization to join the coalition against Islamic State in Syria and Iraq follows weeks of pressure on the two allies, who are wary of NATO confronting Russia in Syria and of alienating Arab countries who see NATO as pushing a pro-Western agenda."NATO as an institution will join the coalition," said one senior diplomat involved in the discussions. "The question is whether this just a symbolic gesture to the United States
BEIJING Chinese President Xi Jinping on Wednesday called for greater efforts to make the country's navy a world class one, strong in operations on, below and above the surface, as it steps up its ability to project power far from its shores.China's navy has taken an increasingly prominent role in recent months, with a rising star admiral taking command, its first aircraft carrier sailing around self-ruled Taiwan and a new aircraft carrier launched last month.With President Donald Trump promising a US shipbuilding spree and unnerving Beijing with his unpredictable approach on hot button issues including Taiwan and the South and East China Seas, China is pushing to narrow the gap with the U.S. Navy.Inspecting navy headquarters, Xi said the navy should "aim for the top ranks in the world", the Defence Ministry said in a statement about his visit."Building a strong and modern navy is an important mark of a top ranking global military," the ministry paraphrased Xi as saying.