Edinburgh firm to offer private 15 minute result Covid-19 tests

A global PPE manufacturer part-based in Edinburgh has launched two rapid result Covid-19 tests.

A medical professional holds a swab used for a rapid-result Covid-19 antigen test. Picture: Philippe Lopez via Getty Images

CHB Medical, whose founder and Chief Executive is based in the company’s Charlotte Square office, has partnered with Irish firm Chanelle McCoy Health Ltd.

The tests have already been made available in Ireland by Lady Chanelle McCoy, a Dragon’s Den Ireland investor and former director of Chanelle Pharma, an Irish drug company founded by her father.

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They are sourced from the US and made by an FDA-approved manufacturer.

The firm is offering two tests, an antigen test, which returns results in 15 minutes, and an antibody test, which gives results in 10.

The finger-prick antibody test can identify antibodies developed against the virus, and will show if someone has Covid-19 or has previously had it.

The antigen test can tell if someone currently has Covid-19, using a nose or throat swab to detect proteins in the virus.

It is much quicker and less expensive than the polymerase chain reaction (PCR) tests used by the NHS, which detect genetic material of the virus but require being sent to a lab.

While positive antigen tests are considered reliable, it is thought there is a higher change of false-negatives than with PCR tests.

Both antigen and antibody tests are now available from CHB Medical to businesses in the UK.

Felicity Griffiths, Edinburgh-based founder and Chief Executive of CHB Medical, said: “We’re thrilled to be working in partnership with Chanelle McCoy Health Ltd to bring these new rapid antibody and antigen diagnostic tests to the UK market.

“Our team is working to provide bespoke packages for businesses on an enquiry-by-enquiry basis, we are able to scale-up our offering in line with the needs of an organisation, and the tests are compatible with private health passports.

“We have already been inundated with enquiries for the tests from businesses and organisations across a wide range of sectors, and it is clear that there is a huge demand for a test which can return a result in as little as 10 minutes.”

Lady McCoy said: “We are delighted to be working with CHB Medical as our UK distributors of what is the most accurate and widely used Covid-19 rapid testing kit available on the market.

“CHB Medical has been selected as our partners due to their vast market experience and successes, professionalism and enthusiasm for the product, and shared vision that the future of COVID-19 control will undoubtedly lie in mass testing regimes.”

CHB Medical is part of CHB Global, which imports and exports data centres, servers and storage. The medical arm was launched earlier this year to repurpose the company’s contacts, warehouses and staff to supply PPE.

It was chosen in June by the British Horseracing Authority to supply a “Back to Racing” PPE kit to to racecourses across the UK, including masks, gloves, hand sanitiser, visors and goggles.

Aberdeen-based TAC Healthcare Group rolled out 12 minute antigen tests in September, from UK-based life sciences company LumiraDx.

NHS Scotland agreed a £6.76 million deal with LumiraDx to purchase 300 rapid testing machines as well as a minimum of 500,000 tests.

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