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Roche To Start Mass-Producing Coronavirus Tests

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Coronavirus tests are on the way.

Medical diagnostics giant Roche (RHHBY) on Friday said it received "Emergency Use Authorization" to begin mass-producing coronavirus testing kits and also processing the results from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.

The Geneva-based pharmaceutical company said the FDA has given it the go-ahead for what it formally called the cobas SARS-CoV-2 Test for the qualitative detection of SARS-CoV-2, the novel coronavirus.

Roche said hospitals and reference laboratories can run the test on the company's fully automated cobas 6800 and cobas 8800 systems. The cobas 6800/8800 Systems, which are used to perform the cobas SARS-CoV-2 test, provide test results in three-and-a-half hours.

The move comes as governments, hospitals and health care professionals in the U.S. and globally scramble to make testing widely available in order to find out if individuals have the virus or not - and to separate and treat them if they do.

"Providing quality, high-volume testing capabilities will allow us to respond effectively to what the World Health Organization has characterized as a pandemic,” Roche Diagnostics CEO Thomas Schinecker said in a statement.

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