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STAT Plus: Pharmalittle: Shortage of a key chemical slows coronavirus testing; CMS touts pilot program to lower insulin costs



Good morning, everyone, and welcome to the middle of the week. Congratulations on making it this far and keep in mind that there are only a few more days until the weekend arrives. So keep plugging away, although do remember to keep a healthy distance from the rest of the world. After all, what are the alternatives? Meanwhile, here is the latest menu of tidbits to help you on your way. Have a smashing and please do stay in touch.

The push to increase testing in the U.S. for the novel coronavirus that causes Covid-19 has hit a new stumbling block: shortages of key chemicals needed to start up and run the tests, STAT explains. In particular, one key product, made by the diagnostics testing giant Qiagen (QGEN), is in dwindling supply. The chemical is used to isolate the virus’ genetic material, or RNA, so that it can be tested. A Qiagen spokesperson acknowledged that “extraordinary” demand was limiting the company’s ability to supply some products.

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