March 19, 2020 / 2:24 PM / 19 days ago

Roche CEO says coronavirus test capacity too limited to screen all

ZURICH, March 19 (Reuters) - Only high-risk patients and those showing signs and symptoms of the new coronavirus should be tested because capacity remains too limited to screen everybody, Roche Chief Executive Severin Schwan said on Thursday.

"There is simply not enough capacity, and as we are all aware, the incidence rates are rapidly increasing," Schwan told reporters on a call with other drug industry executives.

Roche, ThermoFisher Scientific, Hologic and Laboratory Corporation of America have gotten emergency U.S. Food and Drug Administration authorisation for their tests. Schwan said that is helping to increase capacity as confirmed cases worldwide now exceed 200,000 and deaths top 8,000. (Reporting by John Miller; editing by Stephanie Nebehay)

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