COVID-19 will end eventually but it won’t be gone tomorrow and part of that reality is understanding ways in which we can prevent the spread to loved ones. Aside from vaccination, one solution seems to be detection. Although testing has ramped up all across North America, it still isn’t enough to stop the spread with the rapidity that most would like. In an ideal situation, we would be able to test ourselves at home quickly, accurately, and without the fear of exposure at a testing facility. Wouldn’t it be nice to have a gathering of people where they could be tested as they come into your home, so you know the risk of exposure is infinitesimally low? The FDA and Health Canada have both approved at-home test kits for COVID-19, and the production of these kits will be ramping up. Some kits are fully “at home”, from test to delivered test result. Others equip the user to collect a sample but then send it for testing. The first style of kit would be the goal in our “ideal world” scenario. The problem statement here is if the need is to have tests in every house, office, and store, then how do we manufacture enough test kits to satisfy the need cost-effectively?
It is important to recognize the manufacturing hurdles that need to be overcome in this Point of Care space and COVID-19 is just the tip of the iceberg. New COVID and Flu strains, TB, and HIV are all diseases that would benefit from at-home testing. Health Canada just approved the use of an at-home HIV test kit that will revolutionize our ability to identify people at risk. Point of Care (PoC) is a growing industry and it’s vital that we keep innovating to be able to reach this new market demand which is projected to reach $23.36B by 2027 (Fortune Business Insights, 2020).
So, how do key players in the COVID-19 testing market, or any other PoC market, prepare themselves to meet the demand? The answer will be automation. It’s the only solution to such a complex problem. The ability to build more than 330 million home test kits so that every person in America has access to affordable and immediate testing won’t be done by using manual operations and hand assembly.
ATS has been able to provide solutions in the COVID-19 testing space enabling our customers to meet the growing demand for testing across America. We are well-positioned to work and collaborate with clients in the PoC space and help accelerate their growth. New technologies in the automation space are enabling us to build your asset with the demand of your product as well as monitor the equipment performance to help reduce scrap parts and increase machine efficiency.
The first consideration that needs to be made is as companies are developing, they’re at home testing products is how “ready” their product is for manufacturing. ATS is always ready to assist customers with pre-automation studies to help eliminate difficult assembly processes or part variances right from the beginning. Growing a product from its infancy to its scale-up phase is not an easy task and requires months if not years of development, a key way to reduce this burden is to partner with an automation expert who will guide your product development towards scalability.
The second key consideration is how to meet large-scale production volumes on a global scale. Many of our life science customers are operating from various locations and running full-scale production at each. ATS has global manufacturing and service capabilities. We also offer our Illuminate system as an excellent way to monitor the performance of this equipment from a central source. We have the tools and expertise to help drive large-scale manufacturing and growth in a global environment.
Despite how long the battle seems, soon we will be out of the pandemic, however currently in the world of COVID-19 there needs to be a conscious effort to ameliorate the situation as fast and effectively as possible. Leveraging automation solutions to increase production capacity and drive the growth of PoC products benefits society as a whole and should be top of mind in these times. Working with ATS Automation is a great way to get back to what we all love doing and stop living in the world of uncertainty.
Contact us today to learn about our new scalable technologies to help drive your product growth.