Alberta Is Getting A Ton Of Those Lightning Fast COVID-19 Testing Devices Next Month
Hitting rural and remote communities first.
Waiting days for test results could be a thing of the past in Alberta soon. Canada just approved a super rapid novel coronavirus test, and it's rolling out in the coming weeks. COVID-19 testing in Alberta is about to get a whole lot more convenient.
Sitting at the size of a coffee cup, Spartan Biosciences' machine promises to deliver results in under an hour. Your typical tests could take up to a week or more to get confirmation.
On Saturday, April 10, Health Canada gave the company the green light, and they're shipping out ASAP.
Even before the official approval, Alberta had a partnership with the company. In a statement from Monday, March 30, the province announced they'd placed orders for 250 machines and 100,000 testing kits and it cost $9.5 million.
Alberta Health Services (AHS) ays they'll be doing independent tests of the machine's accuracy, but will also move quickly to send it around the province after Health Canada's approval, reads the statement.
The machines will be handed out to health care facilities outside Calgary and Edmonton but will focus on supporting rural and remote communities.
Normal tests for COVID-19 involve taking a long swab and collecting samples from the back of one's throat, a process that's prettyThis new machine uses a different method, saving swabs but still getting the job done.
"COVID-19 places significantly increased demand on our lab capacity," said AHS President and CEO Dr. Verna Yiu in the statement.
She said the new tech would supplement their current tests and "give AHS the ability to provide timely testing and results to more Albertans in more communities."
We reached Spartan Biosciences for comment and this article will be updated.
Alberta Premier Jason Kenney seems willing to bring in tests and medications before waiting for Health Canada's approval. Their partnership started weeks before the official greenlight.
"We won't wait for Health CDA to play catch up," he wrote in a Tweet on Sunday, April 12.
Alberta is currentlywith the amounts of COVID-19 tests being done, and they say these new devices could help keep up with their already breakneck rates of testing.
"This investment will ensure we can maintain our rapid pace in testing and alleviate pressures on our front-line workers with quick result confirmations," said Alberta health minister Tyler Shandro.