$53.7 million contract awarded to Ortho Clinical Diagnostics for COVID fight

Sunday, April 11, 2021

Source: WHEC.com

About a year ago, Rochester’s Ortho Clinical Diagnostics, one of the world’s largest pure-play IVD test companies, got involved in the fight against COVID with testing. 

“We were actually the first company to have emergency use authorization to raise a test, and we did that from Rochester,” head of operations Tony Allen says.

Now. Allen says a $53.7 million BARDA and Department of Defense contract will help continue that fight. 

“To be able to manufacture up to 80 million tests and manufacture them here in Rochester and distribute nationwide when it's needed,” he says.

The contract will fund manufacturing capacity expansion to customers of the company's Covid-19 antigen and two antibody tests for lab equipment which will help detect COVID.

“Every test is a life,” Allen says. “So when a test is a life someone is making a very key decision based on that test so the most the most important thing is that the result is accurate and when this is evolving is how fast you can get that back to the patient."

He says they started with anti-body tests to show if you have been infected and have evolved to antigen test which tests for the virus and where the immunity came from. 

“We continue to develop new tests as the different variants come out or that are projected to come out too,” Allen says.

Allen says this contract means they are prepared to fight COVD and any other possible strains from the pandemic. 

“COVID is not going to wait, so it's not going anywhere very fast and we need to have capability within the dos to be able to rapidly respond to any future types of situations that we experienced in 2020,” Allen says.

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