Rapid paper antigen tests are inexpensive, about $1 to $5 per test, easy to use, can be mass produced and produce results within 15 minutes. Some have compared this to a home pregnancy test.
Daily rapid paper tests could be administered at home using a nasal swab or saliva. If the test is positive then the child would stay home and if the test is negative then the child would be allowed to go to school.
This rapid paper test is a public health tool not a diagnostic test. It is sensitive enough to identify children that have a level of virus that would put you at risk of passing the virus to others. The key is to test frequently, like every 1-3 days.
Using this approach, the prevalence of COVID-19 would drop considerably and everyone would be able to return to work, school, public events, and shopping before the availability of a vaccine.
The developers of these types of tests have not been producing them because they have not been granted an Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
Could this be the test that allows us to return to some sort of normalcy?
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