Washington U. Working To Make Saliva Based COVID Tests Available

Washington University in St. Louis is touting its newly-approved saliva-based COVID-19 test. The Food and Drug Administration signed off on the test last week.

During a press conference Thursday in St. Louis, Dr. Jeff Milbrandt with the university says the test is very accurate, cost-effective and easier than a nasal swab test.

The test allows people to collect their own saliva samples, unlike nasal and throat swab tests that require the work of healthcare employees. It also frees up a shortage of certain lab supplies required to process samples – ultimately saving some money.

Dr. Jeff Milbrandt adds the school is still working out the details to make the test available.

Milbrandt says the new test will help to move away from the limited testing supply since the COVID-19 crisis began.

Missouri currently conducts about 100,000 tests weekly. Milbrandt says the test can also be changed to accommodate other viruses, such as the flu.