October 4, 2020–2:39 p.m.
The Georgia Department of Public Health (DPH) today received the first shipment of Abbott BinaxNOW Rapid COVID-19 Tests. The initial distribution contains 207,000 of the antigen tests, but Georgia is slated to receive 3 million tests by the end of the year. These first tests will be distributed to public health districts statewide for use in schools, colleges and universities, among first responders and other critical areas of need in communities statewide.
The BinaxNow tests require a nasal swab for specimen collection and results are available in 15 minutes. BinaxNOW are meant to be used for individuals with symptoms of COVID-19, ideally within the first seven days of feeling sick.
“Our public health district staff will work with schools and other community partners to distribute and facilitate use of the tests with the necessary oversight from trained healthcare professionals,” said Kathleen E. Toomey, M.D., M.P.H. “Having these rapid tests available will help us quickly identify people who are sick, isolate them, and prevent further spread of COVID-19 among families, close contacts and entire communities.”
The BinaxNOW tests are about the size of a credit card and because they do not require any machines or instrumentation for results, they are highly portable. Results from these antigen tests, like all antigen tests, may need to be confirmed by a PCR test.
Learn more about the BinaxNOW Rapid Antigen COVID-19 Tests and the distribution plan for the United States at https://www.hhs.gov/coronavirus/testing/rapid-test-distribution/index.html.
For more information about COVID-19 https://dph.georgia.gov/novelcoronavirus or https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html.
The Georgia Department of Public Health has also announced that their Saturday testing schedule in each test region has been changed due to low demand for Saturday testing. You can view the new schedules below.