“We are proud to bring our third laboratory to Pflugerville to support COVID-19 testing locally and to improve testing capacity for the entire state," said Fred Turner, the CEO and co-founder of Curative, in a news release. "The great workforce, location, and community partnership opportunities made Pflugerville an easy choice for expanding our laboratory operations."
Curative provides oral-fluid swab testing, which is an alternative to nasopharyngeal testing for COVID-19. Turnaround times for the tests average between 24-48 hours, according to the release.
"The self-administered oral fluid swab involves having the person cough first, which releases virus from the upper and lower respiratory tract," the release states. "The virus is then caught in the saliva, the patient then swabs the inside of their cheeks and the roofs of their mouths. The entire Curative test is done without having to come into close contact with others, therefore eliminating the need for [personal protective equipment] changes."
In July, Curative began providing self-administered oral tests to the city of Pflugerville for use at Austin Public Health's free testing site at The Pfield.
“Once again Pflugerville is on the forefront with the fight against COVID-19," Mayor Victor Gonzales said in the release.
Curative will hire more than 300 employees for its Pflugerville lab, per the release.
“The company selected our area to access a capable workforce with plans to hire their first 150 technicians and healthcare workers in the next few weeks in order to process 10,000 samples daily,” said Amy Madison, the executive director of the Pflugerville Community Development Corp., in the release.
Curative was founded to develop tests for sepsis in January. The business shifted its model to developing COVID-19 tests in early March. Curative currently operates labs in Los Angeles and Washington, D.C.
As of Sept. 8, Curative has processed more than 4 million samples nationwide. The business is scaling to test 1 million samples per week, per the release.