In a message on the company’s homepage, Everlywell acknowledged the lack of coronavirus tests in the US and pledged to develop their own. It hopes the tests will be ready in 1-2 weeks, and promises to offer them at cost, at no profit for the company.
“Our team has been working around the clock with top scientists and laboratories in the nation to develop a test for coronavirus that can be taken at home,” the announcement said.
As the Covid-19 continues to spread across the country and the world, crowding hospitals and disrupting nearly every facet of life, many have been disconcerted by the US’s lack of available testing options. In response, private labs and companies have raced to create their own tests.
You may also like:
Quest and LabCorp are two commercial labs that have developed tests. The University of Washington is working with the Gates Foundation to develop its own at-home kits as well. Everlywell believes that it too can contribute greatly to helping Americans have access.
The company kicked off the effort last week in a post on Medium announcing that it was offering a $1 million incentive to labs that could create coronavirus tests that meet with FDA approval and are compliant to state and federal regulations.
“We believe we have a responsibility to offer the Everlywell platform as part of the response plan for COVID-19 containment in the U.S.,” the post read. The deadline for the effort was March 13th, and the company says decisions will be made by midnight on March 20th. The company believes it can meet its ambitious goal of having tests ready in a matter of weeks.
“With over 250,000 CLIA-certified labs in the U.S., Everlywell sees a significant opportunity to support test development for a home-collection setting.”
Everlywell, a startup out of Austin, Texas, specializes in at-home health kits that can test for everything from STDs to food allergies and thyroid conditions. The tests are mailed directly to customers, who collect their own sample and send it to affiliate labs for testing and diagnostics. With the infrastructure in place, Everlywell believes itself to be in a prime position to develop and distribute Covid-19 tests to the American public quickly and reliably.