US clears home COVID-19 test for German company Siemens Healthineers

The headquarters of Siemens Healthineers are pictured in Erlangen near Nuremberg, Germany on October 7, 2016. REUTERS / Michaela Rehle / File Photo

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December 29 (Reuters) – The U.S. drug regulator has granted emergency use authorization for home COVID-19 testing from German health technology company Siemens Healthineers (SHLG.DE), a move that will increase the availability of tests under pressure from increasing cases of infection.

The approval comes at a time when companies such as Walmart Inc (WMT.N), Walgreens Boots Alliance (WBA.O) and CVS Health Corp (CVS.N) have limited sales of COVID-19 home test kits as demand increased due to the rapid spread of new variants of the coronavirus in the country.

The test, which is expected to be available from January, can be used for self-testing in people as young as 14 or adult samples taken from people aged 2 to 13, Siemens said Wednesday.

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The clearance was granted as part of the Biden administration’s fast-track review program which aims to bring tens of millions of new tests per month to the country, the Department of Health and Human Services said (HHS ).

The U.S. government recently unveiled plans to purchase 500 million COVID-19 rapid tests to distribute free to Americans who request them starting in January. Read more

In October, the HHS said the U.S. government would invest $ 70 million to help bring home testing to the U.S. market in coordination with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.

Roche last week said the FDA granted EUA its COVID-19 rapid home test that can be used by people as young as 14 years old. read more

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Report by Dania Nadeem in Bengaluru; Editing by Shinjini Ganguli

Our standards: Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

James R. Rhodes