NJ receives 15 Abbott ID NOW instruments from feds to expand access to COVID-19 testing

An Abbott ID NOW device

The state has received 15 point-of-care ID NOW testing instruments from the federal government to expand access to COVID-19 testing in New Jersey, Gov. Phil Murphy announced Friday.

The portable, rapid testing machines will be distributed to health care systems throughout the state. Hospitals will be able to test for COVID-19 and process specimens in about 5-13 minutes with the technology. 

“In order to further mitigate the spread of COVID-19 and manage our health care resources and personal protective equipment supply, we need to implement more aggressive testing techniques,” Murphy said. “With Abbott’s innovative point-of-care molecular testing platform, we will be able to swiftly process lab specimens and provide individuals with the care and resources they need immediately. I am grateful for our partnership with the federal government and with Abbott Labs for their assistance in expanding testing capacity in New Jersey.”

In March, Abbott received U.S. Food and Drug Administration Emergency Use Authorization approval for molecular point-of-care testing for the detection of COVID-19. The test runs on the company’s ID NOW platform, providing rapid results in a wide range of health care settings.

“This new initiative will help New Jersey meet demand for testing in our state,” said New Jersey Health Commissioner Judith Persichilli. “Rapid testing will help provide more real-time data on the impact of COVID-19 in our state.”

Thomas Kirn, the lab director for the New Jersey Public Health and Environment Laboratories, said rhe addition of the Abbott rapid testing device to current testing capabilities will help health care providers in address the many challenges associated with providing optimal care to patients with COVID-19.

In addition to the 15 ID NOW instruments, New Jersey has received an initial allotment of 125 tests. Officials said the state will need additional resources to achieve maximum testing capacity.