Hauppauge Company Receives $ 28 Million Order From Brazil For COVID Testing
Chembio Diagnostics Inc. has received an order from Brazil for its coronavirus antigen test which is above Hauppauge company’s sales for all of 2020.
$ 28.3 million purchase order for DPP SARS-CoV-2 antigen test is 14% higher, or 4 million more, than Chembio’s total sales last year of malaria tests , HIV, syphilis and other infectious diseases.
The 20-minute test involves a nasal swab and detects the COVID-19 antigen which indicates an active infection.
The purchase order was placed by Bio-Manguinhos, which provides tests, vaccines and other medical supplies to the Brazilian public health system. Chembio has a branch in the country and has worked with Bio-Manguinhos for years to fight HIV, Zika and other diseases.
The antigen test was first approved by Brazilian regulators in November. After the United States, Brazil has recorded the most COVID deaths since early 2020 – nearly 546,000, according to Johns Hopkins University. Brazil is No. 3 in number of cases after the United States and India.
Enabling providers to test patients at the point of care and determine their infection status in just 20 minutes may be one of the most effective methods of controlling the spread of COVID-19 and improving patient outcomes ” , said Javan Esfandiari, scientific and technological director of Chembio. “We believe the purchase order validates the investments we made earlier this year in inventory for the [antigen test] and I can’t wait to ramp up production. “
The test was developed in Hauppauge at the company’s headquarters, laboratory and factory. It will be produced at the Hauppauge factory, where robots are widely used. Development of the test was supported by two grants last year, totaling $ 13 million, from the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority, part of the US Department of Health and Human Services.
The United States Food and Drug Administration has so far refused to review the Chembio antigen test for emergency use authorization, or EUA.
In June 2020, Chembio’s COVID antibody test lost the EUA after the FDA found inaccurate results in some cases. The company has since made changes to that test, but federal regulators have refused to review them so far.
Antibody tests check patients’ blood for antibodies, which can show whether they have ever had an infection with the virus.
The purchase order for the antigen test comes as a shortfall has “limited cash flow” for Chembio, leading to the proposed sale of additional inventory of up to $ 60 million.
The company estimated revenue of $ 6.4 million for the quarter ended June 30, up from $ 8.7 million in January-March, according to a securities filing.
Chembio reported a loss of $ 25.5 million last year on revenue of $ 32.5 million.