Kiwi company trials tech to test people's Covid immunity

Source: 1News

A Kiwi company is hoping to help open up New Zealand’s borders to the world again and strengthen our national Covid-19 response with their new immunity testing technology.

Orbis Diagnostics is currently trialling a Covid-19 immunity testing platform that they say can accurately measure a vaccinated person's immunity level to Covid-19 within 15 minutes.

If proven successful, the testing technology could be used at the border, among essential service workers and in the wider community to determine who needs a booster shot and when.

Orbis Diagnostics chief technology officer Matheus Vargus said the system is easy to use.

"The test works with the use of a little finger prick," Vargus told Breakfast on Friday morning.

"What we only need is a little droplet of blood and the operator will place this little droplet of blood into the Orbis tech and we'll read the results after 15 minutes.

"So the test is really simple in terms of operation and even more simple in terms of acquiring the sample from anyone who wants to be tested."

They are household contacts of the man in Mt Eden prison who has the virus.

Vargus said the test has the same accuracy as those run in laboratories currently.

"What we've done is brought the technology to the field," he said.

"The only difference is we've made it a lot simpler and a lot faster."

The trial is currently gathering results from 150 Air New Zealand staff.

"Most likely we'll have more people," Vargus said.

"The trials have already started. The initial results are extremely promising."

Results for the trial are expected "within the next few weeks", Vargus added.