Eli Lilly announced Wednesday that it is partnering with the Indiana State Department of Health, with support from the FDA, to speed up testing in Indiana for SARS-CoV-2. Daniel Skovronsky, chief scientific officer at the Indianapolis-based drugmaker, remarked its "scientists have been working…for several weeks to implement and validate this testing approach, and access or produce the chemical reagents that are in short supply across the country," adding "we're optimistic in our ability to help accelerate testing."
CEO David Ricks noted that the company will not accept payment from government agencies, hospitals, insurance companies or patients for conducting or analysing tests, saying "this is one contribution we can make to help slow the spread of coronavirus in our community, and this testing will be entirely free."
Under the partnership, Eli Lilly said it will use its specialised research laboratories to analyse samples taken in Indiana healthcare facilities. According to the company, the move will expand the state's ability to conduct testing and receive timely diagnoses of COVID-19, "assuming [we] can continuously access required diagnostic reagents." Eli Lilly added that as its testing capacity expands, the parties will work together to "maximise the impact of broader testing."
Meanwhile, the company is also piloting drive-through testing that could potentially test patients outside of a healthcare facility to avoid the spread of the virus, adding it will provide more details in the coming days.