Amazon is one of the world’s largest e-commerce companies that enjoys a power over a lot of people around the globe with its business. Being an employer of thousands and thousands of employees, the company is liable to be a responsible party when it comes to health and wellness, especially the COVID-19 threat.
In the United States and many other countries, the COVID-19 vaccination drive has begun and most recently, Amazon has received an approval from the FDA – Food and Drug Administration for the COVID-19 home-kit test that is developed by one of its subsidiaries called STS Lab Holdco. According to a report by The Verge, the e-commerce giant plans to use the COVID-19 self-testing home kit for its onsite COVID-19 testing program.
FDA’s authorisation mentions that Amazon plans to use its Real-Time RT-PCR Test for detecting SARS-CoV-2 as a part of the company’s overall COVID-19 response and preparation programs, says The Verge.
Having said that, the normal test which is happening around everywhere is usually done through the nasal insertion of a swab which is done by a healthcare expert or under his supervision.
The at-home self-test kit by Amazon involves users to take the swab test themselves at home and send the sample to any centralised lab where it can be tested for COVID-19.
As Amazon’s trends have been, analysts have realised that the e-commerce company is keen to move into the healthcare sector. According to multiple reports, it is revealed that back in 2018, Amazon was in advanced talks to acquire a diagnostics company- Confer Health. Earlier this present year, the company also started to sell COVID-19 self-test kits on its e-commerce websites for USD 110 from a company called DxTerity. As mentioned in a report by The Verge, the company also mentioned in a statement last week that it will soon begin to offer at-home health care programs and in-house telehealth as well.
However, the FDA’s authorisation letter was reportedly addressed to the Vice President of Amazon Labs- Cem Sibay. The approval letter also cited Amazon’s screening programs for its employees which says that many of them will automatically be given testing appointments in around every 14 days. The Verge report says that these tests are completely voluntary and that Amazon has partnered with a third-party company to monitor individual test orders and on the basis of that they should issue necessary prescriptions.