(3:18) Saliva Testing for COVID-19 – NPR
Widespread testing for the coronavirus is key to safely reopening the country, but the U.S. has struggled for months to get to the level of testing many experts say we need — even as states and cities begin to loosen restrictions.
Part of the problem is that a test for the coronavirus is not a single device. Testing entails several different steps and requires supplies and pieces of equipment sourced from different places. These supplies have to make it from factories to testing sites where patients’ samples can be collected and to the lab where tests are processed. Along the way, there can be shortages of various components, each one potentially creating a bottleneck. The most common kind of test to check for an active coronavirus infection takes a sample from the back of your nose or throat. There are dozens of varieties of that test, but they all require one key element: the swab. Not a painless solution as you can visually see and hear the “ooh, that doesn’t feel very good” come from the testing patients. Back to normal could mean repeated testing for many and painful swabbing a daily ritual. The only painless option is saliva and is currently FDA authorized using Spectrum’s SDNA Saliva Collection Device.
In this video, we zero in on the swab, detailing what the federal government and private industry did and didn’t do, the new saliva testing option using the Spectrum Solutions saliva collection device (spot 3:18 in the video), and we break down why testing is so complicated in the first place.