Health officials confront new threat to speed of testing

By Around the Web

(THE HILL) Public health officials are warning that a massive ramp-up in the number of tests for the coronavirus coupled with disruptions to the global supply chain are creating new shortages of some of the chemicals needed to process those tests.

The result could be a catastrophe that would grind progress fighting the virus to a halt.

The chemicals, known as reagents, are used in different elements of different tests. They are substances or compounds added to a bodily sample, like a nasal or throat swab. If the virus is present, the reagent will create a chemical reaction that a diagnostic machine can detect.

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