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Thermo Fisher Opens New Plant for Manufacturing COVID-19 Sample Collection Products

By LabMedica International staff writers
Posted on 31 Aug 2020
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Image: Thermo Fisher Opens New Plant for Manufacturing COVID-19 Sample Collection Products (Photo courtesy of Thermo Fisher Scientific Inc.)
Image: Thermo Fisher Opens New Plant for Manufacturing COVID-19 Sample Collection Products (Photo courtesy of Thermo Fisher Scientific Inc.)
Thermo Fisher Scientific Inc. (Waltham, MA, USA) has officially opened its new USD 40 million manufacturing plant in Lenexa, Kansas, USA for the production of viral transport media (VTM) that will continue to be expanded to meet the expected sustained demand for COVID-19 testing.

In early May, Thermo Fisher had entered into a contract with the US government to supply a significant quantity of highly specialized VTM for COVID-19 sample collection. VTM is dispensed into plastic tubes that are used to safely collect and transport clinical specimens containing viruses. This ensures that the sample collected from a COVID-19 nose swab maintains viability while it is shipped to a lab for testing. To ensure accuracy of COVID-19 test results, VTM must be manufactured and dispensed into tubes in an aseptic environment. Thermo Fisher’s new facility is dedicated to accelerating production and ensuring quality control by utilizing the company’s proven blueprint for high-quality VTM production. In addition to supporting the US government’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the products from the new facility will also be used for collection and sampling for flu and other viruses.

"Thermo Fisher is proud to support virtually every aspect of the global COVID-19 response and our colleagues in Lenexa have played a key role in those efforts," said Gianluca Pettiti, senior vice president and president of the company's Specialty Diagnostics business. "Thanks to their hard work, Lenexa significantly increased production of VTM units. The team has worked with unrelenting intensity to build out and open a new site in just about six weeks. They understood the urgent national need, accepted the challenge and have delivered for the American people."



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