The Centers for Disease Control has revised its mask-wearing guidance. Google has announced that to work in the company’s offices all 140,000-plus employees will have to be vaccinated against COVID-19. A new coronavirus variant, now said to be as contagious as chickenpox, is surging along with vaccination resistance.
These developments strongly suggest the global pandemic is far from over. “Growing resistance to vaccination will increase the need for testing,” said Rod Martin, founder and CEO of Agile Technologies, a new, Black-owned COVID testing company. “Employers can’t risk intra-office super spreader events. With the federal government and other employers mandating vaccination or proof of a negative test result, rapid COVID tests with same-day results will become all the more important.”
Agile discussed the importance of rapid COVID testing during a period of eased restrictions and surging variants this past Saturday, July 31 at the Ford City mall. Agile opened its latest testing facility there and strongly encourages anyone who has not been vaccinated, as well as those who have, to come in for frequent testing.
Where we go from here may be determined when schools reopen later this month at the same time a new virus strain, the ‘Delta variant,’ becomes the latest threat to public health. Martin says research shows that people who are most at risk are young people of color, from kindergarten through high school, especially kids under 12, with Black children becoming infected at a higher rate. “Don’t guess, get a test,” says Dr.Terry Mason, former city of Chicago Commissioner of Public Health. “We now live in an era of the Coronavirus pandemic. I’m reminded of the words attributed to engineer and statistician William Edwards Deming, who said ‘In God we trust; all others must bring data.’ The data can come in the form of test results. Get a test, then protect yourself with the vaccine. These are the actual facts.”
Agile Technologies Founder Martin says he started the company after it became evident that as the pandemic was progressing, communities of color would be hardest hit. He said his own research indicated the quality and reliability of a lot of the COVID testing being administered in those early days could have been better.
Martin says Agile Technologies is currently the only company administering two 10-minute, FDA approved, highly accurate tests. One is a test for antibodies, the other test is to detect antigens. Antigens are those things that set off the body’s immune system. If the person tests positive, Agile Technologies can also use DNA to determine what variant of the disease it is.
“Testing prevents, predicts and detects,” Martin says. “If we all do what we’re supposed to do, we can keep this virus and its mutations at bay. That’s why Agile Technologies is here.”