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The U.S. National Institutes of Health is urging scientists and investors to compete in a $500 million national challenge that will help the agency identify the best candidates for at-home or point-of-care tests for Covid-19.
The NIH is likening the program to “Shark Tank,” the reality television show where entrepreneurs compete for financial backing. Scientists and innovators will vie for a share of a $500 million fund that will be awarded to those with the most promising technologies. Finalists will also be matched with technical, manufacturing and business experts to help advance their products.
The NIH said the objective is to make millions of accurate and easy-to-use tests per week available to all Americans by the end of summer 2020, and even more in time for the flu season. The contest is part of a new program called the Rapid Acceleration of Diagnostics initiative, which received $1.5 billion in federal stimulus funding, the agency said Wednesday.
24,385 in U.S.Most new cases today
-16% Change in MSCI World Index of global stocks since Wuhan lockdown, Jan. 23
-1.107 Change in U.S. treasury bond yield since Wuhan lockdown, Jan. 23
-0.5% Global GDP Tracker (annualized), March