President Donald Trump lauded Abbott Labs on its new 5-minute coronavirus test Sunday and said the company would begin shipping out 50,000 tests a day this week.
Trump claimed that the new test “will allow us to defeat the virus.” (RELATED: Trump: ‘Quarantine Will Not Be Necessary,’ Instead Directs CDC To Issue ‘Strong’ Travel Advisory)
The president, who in recent days has framed the dramatic uptick in new confirmed cases across the nation to an increase in testing, noted that Abbott’s product will allow for “immediate” testing of medical personnel combating coronavirus.
This will “enable us to act quickly and aggressively to shut down the spread of the virus, which is so quickly in critical facilities,” he told reporters gathered in the White House Rose Garden Sunday evening.
The tests were approved by the Food and Drug Administration on Saturday.
“I am pleased that the FDA authorized Abbott’s point-of-care test yesterday. This is big news and will help get more of these tests out in the field rapidly,” FDA Commissioner Steve Hahn said in a statement on the approval. “We know how important it is to get point-of-care tests out in the field quickly. These tests that can give results quickly can be a game changer in diagnosing COVID-19.”
During the press conference, Trump also noted that the White House task force and the Federal Emergency Management Agency are working with several other private companies to manufacture personal protective equipment for medical personnel. FEMA is running Project Air Bridge, which will ship PPE from other countries to the United States. The first batch arrived over the weekend and contained 80 tons of N95 respirators, gowns, gloves, and face masks.