Rapid and affordable coronavirus antigen tests from two different companies — SD BioSensor in South Korea and Abbott in the U.S. — will soon be distributed across the world as part of the global Access to Covid Tools initiative, which was launched in March. The World Health Organization has granted BioSensor's test emergency approval and is expected to soon do so for Abbott's, with 20 percent of their production going to lower income countries. The WHO's Dr. Maria Van Kerkhove explained Monday that the tests are crucial because of their turnaround time, which is just 15 to 30 minutes, and the fact that they don't need to be taken to labs to determine a result. Faster testing will likely play a significant role in helping countries with less access to reliable diagnostic tools combat outbreaks.
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