FOX 35 EXCLUSIVE: Ellume CEO discusses plans for at-home COVID-19 test

Ellume founder and CEO Sean Parsons says his company's been working for ten years to develop the technology that went into the new over-the-counter at-home COVID test.

"Everything you need to perform the test is in the kit with the exception of your smartphone, which you need to bring separately," said Ellume CEO Sean Parsons.

The test was approved Tuesday by the FDA. It includes a nasal swab, analyzer and Bluetooth technology to send test data to your phone through an app with results in just 15 minutes.

Parsons expects the first kits to be shipped in January and to hit shelves in February.

"We really are looking to scale our manufacturing as swiftly as we can to enable the product to be used in as many of these places as possible."

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He expects to produce 100,000 kits daily by the end of January and a million daily by mid-2021, and they may be sent to more than just stores.

"There are other discussions really in parallel with major universities and with some of the major sporting organizations about how a test might get students back onto campus and how a test might help get fans back into stadiums," said Parsons.

The National Institute of Health helped with the ramp-up of production in the hopes shoppers won't go to a store searching for a kit and find an empty shelf.

"We hope there's not a rush on the products. We’ll be working with the retailers to limit that, to try and ensure that we can have the product do the most good. We’re working feverishly to deliver as many products as we can," said Parsons.

The FDA says the tests are 96% accurate, and like any antigen test, there's a chance of a false positive or negative. Parsons acknowledges that and says no test is perfect. He says the app can send your test results to your doctor so you can decide whether it's worth taking a PCR test to confirm results.


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