A new COVID-19 test that offers faster results could help sports leagues like the NBA and MLB get back in action sooner.
Cepheid, a molecular diagnostics company based in California, announced Saturday that it has received emergency use authorization from the United States Food and Drug Administration for a test that takes just 45 minutes to determine if a person is infected with COVID-19.
According to Sports Illustrated, the test is called “Xpert Xpress SARS-CoV-2” and it assesses if a person has SARS-CoV-2. The test returns results on the spot, so samples don’t have to be sent to a lab.
Cepheid says the test will begin shipping next week.
The FDA’s emergency-use declaration is significant, but the Xpert Xpress test isn’t 100 percent accurate. It’s also not clear how quickly the test will be made available to private businesses, such as sports leagues or healthcare testing companies who conduct business.
The hope is that the test could mean that all players, coaches and referees could be tested prior to a game or practice, allowing games to go on as planned.