The US medical regulator has issued an emergency license to use the first antigen test, which is able to determine whether a person is infected with the coronavirus in minutes.
“The US food and drug administration has issued the first emergency authorization to use the COVID-19 antigen test, a new category of tests for use in the current pandemic,” the Agency’s website says.
According to the FDA, the license was granted to the Quidel Corporation test on Friday evening.
“One of the main advantages of the antigen test is the speed of this test, which can give results in minutes,” the FDA writes.
However, it is noted that the antigen test cannot detect all infections. According to the Agency, antigen tests are accurate when detecting the virus, while not as sensitive as molecular PCR tests.
“This means that the positive results of the antigen tests are very accurate, but there is a possibility of false-negative results, so a negative result does not exclude the presence of infection. With this in mind, a negative antigen test result should be confirmed by a PCR test before deciding on treatment or to prevent the possible spread of the virus due to a false-negative result,” the office said.