The test, developed by the California-based company Lucira Health, requires a prescription from a health care provider, and people under the age of 14 also cannot perform the test on themselves.
But with a relatively simple nasal swab, the test can return results in about half an hour, and it is projected by the company to cost $50 or less, according to the product’s website. Clinicians can also run the test on their patients, including children younger than 14, potentially delivering results during a single visit to a care center or pharmacy instead of routing a sample through a lab.
A handful of other tests have been given emergency authorization by the F.D.A. for at-home collection of samples, which are then shipped to a lab for processing. But Lucira’s test is the first to remove the need for an intermediary.