South Florida-based disaster recovery firm Disaster Management Group (DMG) has introduced a 15-minute COVID-19 screening tool, which helps in limiting the spread of coronavirus.

The screening tool, dubbed DMGtest, is claimed to be the first of its kind used in Florida for the screening of novel coronavirus. It is designed to deliver results within 15 minutes.

The COVID-19 rapid blood test has been developed under licence for DMGtest by BioMedomics. DMG offers the health care product to state and local governments, in addition to commercial organisations across the world.

According to the company, Florida had 3,198 positive cases of COVID-19 and 46 deaths as of Friday evening and over two million tests were administered across the world since the outbreak in Wuhan.

The DMGtest  includes collecting a blood sample from a finger prick

The DMGtest, which uses a blood sample taken from a finger prick, identifies exposure to COVID-19 whether a patient is experiencing symptoms or not, within four days of the antibody production in a patient’s blood, said the company.

The test is said to deliver accuracy rate between 89% and 91%, as it relies on the level of antibody production in each individual’s blood.

At present, Florida and most other US states use PCR tests to assess candidates for the presence of COVID-19. The tests include a taking a swab from the candidate’s nose and throat to check for the DNA of the virus

DMG CEO Tom Rubio said: “DMGtest is the first time the same screening tool that offers a blood test for evaluating candidates who may have COVID-19 that was used efficiently and effectively in China, South Korea, and the United Kingdom is being used in the United States.

“This cost-effective screening tool can help communities all across the country quickly test, detect and monitor COVID-19 to prevent the spread of coronavirus.”

Recently, US-based technology incubator Astrotech announced the development of BreathTest-1000, to screen for volatile organic compound (VOC) metabolites in breath that could indicate lung infections, including Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) or pneumonia.