N.J. gets 15 Abbott ID NOW machines — the ones that can do COVID-19 tests in as little as 5 minutes

Systems will not be able to be put into maximum use right away, as state received only 125 tests that can be run on them

By Tom Bergeron
New Jersey | Apr 10, 2020 at 1:10 pm

Faster COVID-19 testing is coming to New Jersey.

Gov. Phil Murphy announced Friday that the state has acquired 15 point-of-care ID NOW portable testing instruments that can process COVID-19 tests in 5-13 minutes.

The rapid-testing machines, produced by Abbott, will be given to health care systems across the state. They were obtained from the federal government.

In addition to the 15 ID NOW instruments, New Jersey received an initial allotment of 125 tests. The state will require additional resources to achieve maximum testing capacity, but Murphy said the initial acquisition is a good start and will be a big help.

“In order to further mitigate the spread of COVID-19 and manage our health care resources and personal protective equipment supply, we need to implement more aggressive testing techniques,” he said in a release. “With Abbott’s innovative point-of-care molecular testing platform, we will be able to swiftly process lab specimens and provide individuals with the care and resources they need immediately.

“I am grateful for our partnership with the federal government and with Abbott Labs for their assistance in expanding testing capacity in New Jersey.”

Abbott received emergency use authorization from the FDA in March. The test runs on the company’s ID NOW platform, providing rapid results in a wide range of health care settings.

Health Commissioner Judith Persichilli said the speed of the testing will help improve analysis and modeling.

“Rapid testing will help provide more real-time data on the impact of COVID-19 in our state,” she said.

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