"The Navy specified that the test be simple enough for non-laboratory personnel to use in field conditions. The alarming spread of the virus necessitated that such a test be available."
Solicitation Number: W911QY14P0209:
"calls for the procurement of 400 A/H7N9 rapid assay tests that can be deployed through NHRC's surveillance network. The objective of this effort is to test specimens from ongoing surveillance programs and from special investigations of respiratory illness among military personnel and civilians."
The key take-away from this procurement is the limited number of detection kits ordered. Four-hundred kits seems like a rather minuscule supply if the US Navy is expecting a H7N9 pandemic. But given that each kit is capable of performing 10 tests, one might surmise that having 4000 individual H7N9 test kits forward deployed to areas where the sampling will be done by "non laboratory personnel" is a sign that the USN sees a risk and wants to get an early lead if things start to go south. It will be interesting to see if the general public ends up being force fed a much higher level of concern about H7N9 than the Navy seems to be taking.
Sources:Rapid Test Kits for A/H7N9 Influenza: Solicitation Number: W911QY14P0209