OraSure Technologies Wins Circle of Excellence Award
OraQuick Rapid HIV-1 Antibody Test
Approved by the Food and Drug Administration, the OraQuick rapid HIV-1 antibody test provides results with greater than 99 percent accuracy in 20 minutes, according to its producer, OraSure Technologies Inc. of Bethlehem, Pa. The device uses less than a drop of blood to detect antibodies to the virus, which is the cause of most AIDS cases in the US.
Unlike other antibody tests for HIV, OraQuick can be stored at room temperature, requires only finger-stick whole blood, needs no specialized equipment, and may be used in both traditional laboratory and nontraditional clinical settings. The test is expected to have an impact on hospital, military and public health operations.
Current HIV testing takes up to 14 days for results, and 30 to 50 percent of individuals tested in public health settings do not return to receive them. Because the OraQuick test can be completed in less than a half hour, almost 100 per- cent of those tested will receive their results, lead-ing to greater numbers obtaining counseling and treatment.
The device is being employed in public health; in hospitals to test expectant mothers, ensuring that those who are HIV-positive receive preventive measures to minimize the likelihood of transmission to their infants during delivery; and in emergency rooms.