New Corona-testing of Roche's hope

A difficulty in the fight against the new Coronavirus, represent the laboratory tests. In part, it will take days, until the patient know whether they are infec

New Corona-testing of Roche's hope

A difficulty in the fight against the new Coronavirus, represent the laboratory tests. In part, it will take days, until the patient know whether they are infected or not, because the labs are overwhelmed with the flood of Tests.

The Roche group is now a breakthrough. The company is not only in the pharmaceutical business, but has a division for diagnostic equipment and test. This division has now received from the US regulatory FDA a Notgenehmigung for a new machine test method for the new Virus. In these Tests, the results should be in three and a half hours. With the decision of the FDA, the new procedures will be available in all countries, the label will accept the CE – so also in Switzerland.

"The demand of the laboratories continues to exceed supply, we need to transpose the test ratio."Severin Schwan, CEO of Roche,

"On one of our diagnostic systems can be within 24 hours, around 4,000 Tests," says Roche CEO Severin Schwan in an interview. In the usual manual procedures, only a few dozen Tests are possible per day. Around 800 of these diagnostic systems, the Roche in Rotkreuz ZG manufactures are in use around the world. "Switzerland is well taken care of here," says Swan, to name without Numbers.

Roche bar with the new procedure "an important contribution to the rapid and efficient detection of the Virus" by the group "there are hospitals and reference laboratories the ability to test a large number of samples," says Michael Nawrath, a physician and Analyst at the Zürcher Kantonalbank.

But even with the new mechanical procedures, it was not possible to screen the entire population on a nationwide basis. "The demand of the laboratories continues to exceed supply, we need to transpose the test ratio," explains Swan. The priority must continue to be on patients who already show symptoms of the disease.

German delivery-stop and so far no Problem

A Test costs 15 Swiss francs, the largest part of the cost of the diagnosis make, however, equipment and skilled personnel, so the Swan. "We produce every month, millions of Tests," says Roche chief.

in the United States, where the spread of the Virus is just beginning so right, could help the Test to get the pandemic, a better grip. The US has a massive capacity problem in the case of Corona-Tests, so far, according to the "Financial Times have been" only 11'000 people on the new Virus to be tested. According to the world health organization has alone. of China, a test capacity of 1.7 million Tests per week

The new procedures of Roche are manufactured in the laboratory devices in Rotkreuz, ZG. The precursors for the Tests come from the United States, the consumables come from Germany.

However, Germany has started to impose a delivery stop for critical medical supplies such as masks. "We have no problems with the flow of goods," asserts Swan. Because all the Test necessary part of products would be each other, depend on each other. Germany had therefore no interest, to block the export of excise goods for Test, because it alone is not a Corona Test was not possible.

Because of the passenger air traffic is restricted between the United States and Europe, which is also used for goods-products, Roche has self-chartered cargo planes, in order to secure the flow of goods.

big business is not the new Test for Roche, however, assured Swan. "The volumes are irrelevant to the group level", the boss of the group. However, with the rapid development of machine-based Tests, Roche could build up in the case of agencies such as the U.S. FDA supervision a lot of goodwill.

Created: 14.03.2020, 07:51 PM

Updated Date: 14 March 2020, 07:03

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