The Georgia Department of Public Health (DPH) received the first shipment of Abbott BinaxNOW Rapid COVID-19 Tests.
The initial distribution contains 207,000 of the antigen tests, but Georgia is slated to receive 3 million tests by the end of the year. These first tests will be distributed to public health districts statewide for use
in schools, colleges and universities, among first responders and other critical areas of need in communities statewide.
The BinaxNow tests require a nasal swab for specimen collection and results are available in 15 minutes. BinaxNOW are meant to be used for individuals with symptoms of COVID-19, ideally within the first seven days of feeling sick.
“Our public health district staff will work with schools and other community partners to distribute and facilitate use of the tests with the necessary oversight from trained healthcare professionals,” said Kathleen E. Toomey, M.D., M.P.H. “Having these rapid tests available will help us quickly identify people who are sick, isolate them, and prevent further spread of COVID-19 among families, close contacts and entire communities.”
The BinaxNOW tests are about the size of a credit card and because they do not require any machines or instrumentation for results, they are highly portable. Results from these antigen tests, like all antigen tests, may need to be confirmed by a PCR test.
“Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, every time Georgia has asked President Trump, Vice President Pence, and the Coronavirus Task Force for resources, they have quickly met our requests,” Governor Kemp said last week. “Today’s fantastic news that an initial shipment of 200,000 rapid COVID tests will be made available to the state of Georgia – for free – underscores how the Trump administration has made every resource available to state officials as we battle this invisible enemy. With over three million rapid tests available in the coming months, these tests will be prioritized to protect our most vulnerable citizens in long-term care facilities, keeping kids and staff safely in school, and support our measured, data-driven approach to moving Georgia forward.”