Covid Testing With Lollipop

Lollipop Based Covid Testing To Replace Nasal Swab Method

Here is a new alternative to the painful & annoying nasal swab tests for COVID-19. A pharmaceutical startup, TAH (Test At Home) has come up with an alternative for deep NP (Naso-Pharyngeal) swabs. Instead of the cotton bud, a lollipop is used as a swab for sample collection.

95% Accuracy

Covid Testing With Lollipop
TAH’s lollipop-like device. Image Credits: Test At Home

The medical technology start-up, TAH finished clinical studies on its new device that allows people to collect their own saliva samples for COVID-19 testing. The company’s co-founder, Vivek Manoharan reported in Businessline that this creative edible buckle cavity swab device has indicated approximately 95% accuracy according to the first clinical trial results. The firm intends to begin studies on children by September.

Though NP swabs are regarded as a benchmark for COVID-19 testing, it is dangerous for the healthcare workers who collect samples from infected individuals. Besides this risk, nasal swabbing is inconvenient and painful, even for the people who self-administers using home-based testing solutions. This method of sample collection is hard for certain patients and young kids.

Manoharan stated that testing with saliva samples is popular. He added that their device is

designed to help trigger less viscous and consistent oral fluids with no or less aerosol production while collecting the sample, which is quite the opposite of spit saliva collection.

The retrieved sample can later be sent for different assays, including ELISA, rapid antigen tests, and RT-PCR.

Clinical Trials

The firm is registered in India and Singapore. In the year 2020 (April to June), the company successfully completed clinical studies at Nasik with 150 participants.

Manoharan mentioned that they even found that 8 samples from the nasal swab testing were tested negative initially, however the same when tested using saliva samples gave positive results. He further mentioned that this is a new technology and this is their initial product. They will start commercial distribution after getting approval from the regulator.


The device will be indigenously manufactured via a third party. The estimated cost of this new alternative is less than $1. It has a citric acid flavor for facilitating increased secretion of saliva.

Presently, the firm is manufacturing 10,000 samples for non-government and government health organizations as a trial run.


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Covid Testing With Lollipop


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