It’s manufactured by Ellume’s facility in Frederick.
Frederick, Md. (KM) – COVID-19 test kits are available free of charge for those who are blind or have low vision. That announcement was made on Thursday by Ellume which has a manufacturing facility in Frederick.
The company says this follows a February 24th announcement by the White House on improving access for COVID tests for persons with disabilities and older adults. Consumers who are blind or have low vision can order the tests by calling 1-800-232-0233, or going on line to http://specialusps.com/testkits/accessible.
The company says it has worked with the US Department of Health and Human Services, the Food and Drug Administration, the National Institutes of Health, and the National Federation of the Blind to make these tests available for those who are blind or with low vision.
“Ellume is incredibly proud to help make at-home COVID testing more accessible. For too long, Americans who are blind or have low vision have struggled to take advantage of this vital tool in the pandemic,” says Dr. Sean Parsons, Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Ellume, in a statement. “From the outset, we designed our test with consumers in mind, featuring audio step-by-step instructions and digitally generated results. In collaboration with the National Federation of the Blind, we are working to make our product the most accessible home test on the market. We support the White House program to make our digital tests readily available for the blind or low vision community.”
“When we first assessed the Ellume test kit months ago we were surprised to find a high degree of accessibility despite a few notable barriers. We thank Ellume for its thoughtful design and for working with us to further improve the nonvisual access of their COVID tests. While there are more improvements needed in the government programs, we can all be proud of the results from our COVID testing advocacy efforts that have successfully created changes in the program leading to the ability of blind Americans to receive twelve free tests per order,” says Mark Riccobono, President of the National Federation of the Blind, in a statement. “By working together, we have forever enhanced the accessibility of at-home testing products for blind Americans, and we are excited for our continued collaboration.”
Ellume says it 215,000 square foot facility in Frederick will manufacture these test kits, which will contain 12 tests per order.
The development and supply of these tests has been funded in part from the NIH RADx initiative with federal funds from the National Institute of Biomedical Imaging and Bioengineering, National Institutes of Health, Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority, US Department of Health and Human Services, and the Department of Defense.
By Kevin McManus