Roche wins approval for faster coronavirus test


How to test for the new coronavirus is emerging as a key question in the battle against the disease.

In the U.S., testing has been hampered by flawed kits handed out by the federal government.

Some gave false results.

In countries around the world there has been pressure to speed up checks.

Now doctors might have a new weapon.

Pharmaceutical giant Roche says it's got emergency approval from U.S. authorities for a faster test.

The new system provides results in 3.5 hours, and can handle over 4,000 tests a day.

U.S. approval means the system is also approved for use in many other countries.

The Swiss firm says it's pushing its factories to the limit to produce as many test kits as possible.

It's now in talks with U.S. authorities over deploying more systems where they are most needed.

That includes in Washington state, where most of the nation's coronavirus deaths have occurred.

Roche shares were up around 11% by early afternoon Friday (March 13).