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FDA Extends Storage Life for Nearly 1 Million Expired COVID-19 Test Kits in Florida

COVID-19 test centers across Florida — which has dealt with overwhelming demand over the past few weeks — may have just taken a big break.

On Wednesday, Governor Ron DeSantis announced that he could actually use up to one million coronavirus rapid test kits that expired in December.

The US Food and Drug Administration has extended its shelf life to March by extending its shelf life by three months in a warehouse full of 800,000 to 1 million Abbott Laboratories Binax NOW COVID-19 test kits.

Tests that expire between December 26th and 30th will be sent to emergency management offices, county health departments, public security agencies, hospitals, and long-term care facilities.

“These will be procured as if they were licensed,” DeSantis said at a press conference in Bonita Springs on Wednesday. “Various test centers, different counties of health.”

Watch the press conference:

Florida Governor Ron DeSantis Holds Press Conference in Bonita Springs

DeSantis added that the rapid COVID-19 test kit is not a home test and cannot be sent directly to Florida citizens. Only trained medical professionals can manage them at the laboratory.

The governor said the test expired in December Due to lack of demand in the latter half of 2021. At that time, health officials said that highly contagious variants of Omicron had not yet surfaced in Florida.

“These three months had very low prevalence of COVID, so there was little demand for testing in Florida,” DeSantis said. “I think so [Division of Emergency Management] Basically, I fixed it so that it wouldn’t be sent if it might not be accurate. So they needed to be able to say that to the FDA. “

The FDA said it extended its expiration date after “continuous stability studies” proved that the test kit was still accurate and usable.

For weeks, test centers across Florida have faced hours of waiting time, making it nearly impossible to find a COVID-19 test kit at a local pharmacy.

To address the shortfall, DeSantis said the state has obtained one million home tests, which are being sent to nursing homes, long-term care facilities, and the elderly community.



FDA Extends Storage Life for Nearly 1 Million Expired COVID-19 Test Kits in Florida

Source link FDA Extends Storage Life for Nearly 1 Million Expired COVID-19 Test Kits in Florida

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