While the Victorian Transport Association (VTA) has commended the state government’s push to ramp up local production of rapid antigen tests (RATs), it says more needs to be done to ensure supply for transport workers.
Lumos Diagnostics, together with its delivery partner Planet Innovation, will establish a manufacturing facility and innovation hub in Victoria, with support from the government.
If approved by the Therapeutic Goods Administration, Lumos, which is already making RATs for Canadian and European markets, will produce one million tests a month from April, three million a month after July, with full production from October onwards of up to 50 million RATs each year.
“The VTA commends the Victorian Government for investing in local rapid antigen test production, which will help improve certainty in the integrity of our supply chains as the economy re-opens and more people are exposed to Covid,” said VTA CEO Peter Anderson.
“The bigger issue for the freight industry, however, is access to rapid tests, which is continuing to be challenging for medium and small operators. We renew our calls for RATs to be provided to the industry free-of-charge and from existing state and Commonwealth stockpiles, so that operators and drivers can meet their testing obligations and prevent our supply chains from collapse.”
The Lumos facility will also be able to produce diagnostic tests for infectious diseases, tropical diseases, chronic diseases and reproductive health, in addition to RATs.