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Merit completes critical lateral flow test manufacturing facility in York

Northumberland construction specialist Merit has completed a contract to expand a lateral flow test manufacturing facility for a York business.

The Cramlington company, a former company of the year at the North East Business Awards, carried out the project for Abingdon Health through its specialist healthcare division Merit Health, with most of the work taking place offsite.

The project forms part of significant expansion plans for Abingdon Health, a leader in the field of rapid diagnostic development and manufacture, and was designed and built using next generation offsite construction techniques.

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The new facility was constructed with 39 Pre-Assembled Modules (PAMs), with 75% of the build being manufactured at Merit’s factory in Northumberland before being transported to York for assembly and installation.

The facility has technical spaces including wet laboratories that require close temperature control, as well as and dry room areas.

Merit has completed the lateral flow test manufacturing facility in York

The new facility will support Abingdon Health’s ongoing development of high quality, effective rapid tests whilst also boosting its manufacturing capabilities and increasing its output capacity.

Tony Wells, managing director at Merit, said: “We enjoyed working collaboratively with Abingdon Health to deliver their new lateral flow manufacturing facility, which formed part of their exciting expansion plans.

“We manufactured a large part of the facility at the Merit factory, enabling Abingdon Health to continue their critical operations whilst we built their laboratory offsite. We achieved this by using our patent pending Pre-Assembled Modules (PAMs) system which was then transported to site for installation.

“As well as minimising disruption, our offsite construction techniques offer fast track project delivery with improved quality, enhanced infection control and zero carbon emissions in operation.”

Oliver Gardner, chief operations officer at Abingdon Health, said: “We initiated our expansion strategy in 2019 to better serve the growing demand for rapid testing, which has been accelerated across all sectors due the exposure of lateral flow technology during the Covid-19 pandemic.

“The completion of this phase of expansion is critical for our plans going forward.

“Merit acted as a true partner, carrying out the build in and around our normal operations and minimising disruption for our R&D and manufacturing teams.”

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