COVID-19 smell test developed to help combat spread of coronavirus

Studies found 50 to 90 percent of those who test positive for COVID-19 have lost their sense of taste and smell. Given that, Colorado scientists had an idea.

Epidemiologist Dan Larremore said, “Screening for anosmia, the loss of smell, would actually be a pretty effective tool in combating the spread of COVID.”

Derek Toomre, the developer of “u-Smell-it,” shared, “The test is really simple. It’s basically a… scratch-and-sniff style card. It has five windows on it. [You] scratch it, rub it, [and smell].”

Each window has a different scent. You enter your choices on your phone. If you get less than three of five right, it’s time for a follow-up test to determine if you have COVID.

Larremore used a mathematical model to determine the impact of these smell tests. He found that one given every three days worked better than weekly laboratory tests in curbing coronavirus infections.

They “can manufacture 100 million tests per day,” costing only 50 cents apiece.

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