Swine flu test authorized for US troops overseas

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration said Tuesday it has authorized the emergency use of a swine flu test for U.S. troops overseas. The authorization allows the military to speed up diagnoses and treatment of the virus.
The FDA emergency authorization lets the Defense Department distribute the swine flu test to its qualified laboratories that have the right equipment and personnel to perform and interpret test results.
The authorization allows the use of unapproved medical products or unapproved uses of approved medical products during a public health emergency, the FDA said.
The FDA said the test will help to speed up diagnosis of H1N1 infections so that deployed troops can quickly begin treatment.
The announcement comes as the U.S. government gears up for the arrival of a vaccine. First supplies are likely by October, but most of it is unlikely to arrive before late November.
A presidential advisory panel said in a report presented Monday that a "plausible scenario" for the United States this year is wide-scale infections, possibly 30,000 to 90,000 deaths, mostly among young children and young adults, and perhaps as many as 300,000 sick enough to require intensive care unit treatment at hospitals. Seasonal flu typically causes 30,000-40,000 annual deaths in the United States, mainly among people over 65.

Updated : 2021-04-15 04:24 GMT+08:00