MONDAY, July 20, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- An emergency use authorization (EUA) has been issued for the Quest Diagnostics Quest SARS-CoV-2 real-time reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction test for use with pooled samples containing up to four individual swab specimens collected under observation, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration said Saturday.
The test is the first COVID-19 diagnostic test to be authorized for use with pooled samples.
Sample pooling is an important public health tool because it allows for more people to be tested quickly using fewer testing resources, according to the FDA.
"This EUA for sample pooling is an important step forward in getting more COVID-19 tests to more Americans more quickly while preserving testing supplies," FDA Commissioner Stephen Hahn, M.D., said in an agency news release. "Sample pooling becomes especially important as infection rates decline and we begin testing larger portions of the population."