Summaries of health policy coverage from major news organizations
OraSure Awarded $6M Contract by New York City Health Department To Provide OraQuick Rapid HIV Tests
OraSure Technologies on Tuesday announced it has been awarded a $6 million, multiyear contract by the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene for the purchase of OraQuick Advance Rapid HIV 1/2 Antibody tests, the AP/Houston Chronicle reports (AP/Houston Chronicle, 6/27). The OraQuick rapid HIV test requires users to swab their gums and then place the swab in a holder. After 20 minutes, one line appears on the strip if the test result is negative and two appear if the result is positive. Positive results require a follow-up test with a medical professional for confirmation (Kaiser Daily HIV/AIDS Report, 6/27). DHMH as part of the contract agreed to increase its use of the OraQuick test, the AP/ Chronicle reports (AP/Houston Chronicle, 6/27). OraSure CEO Douglas Michels said that after New York City began using the OraQuick test last year, HIV testing increased 30%. He said, 'Word gets out that the health department is offering an oral fluid test" (Kennedy, Allentown Morning Call, 6/28). The company in a release on Tuesday said, "According to [DHMH], more than 100,000 New Yorkers are living with HIV, but thousands do not know that they are infected," adding, "As a result, many infected individuals do not receive the care they need to stay healthy and unknowingly spread HIV in their community." The contract will take effect July 1 (Reuters, 6/27).
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