17 July 2010

Breath of Life ~ Low-Cost Portable Ventilator

Thanks to MIT's In The World rapporteur David Chandler for his Breath of Life piece spotting the low-cost portable ventilator project born in MIT Professor Alex Slocum's core mechanical engineering course Precision Machine Design in collaboration with Dr Jussi Saukkonen of Boston University Medical Center. Grad student Abdul al Husseini, Amelia Servi, and team...
"...devised a better way to keep patients breathing in places that lack standard mechanical ventilators, or during times of emergency such as pandemics or natural disasters, when normal hospital resources may be overextended. [...] There is a substantial need for such devices in many developing nations, especially in rural areas that have no access to existing ventilator technology. [...] “it’s likely there would be millions of cases worldwide” that could benefit from such a device. In addition, a U.S. government study in 2005 found that in a worst-case pandemic scenario, this country alone might need more than 700,000 mechanical ventilators, while only 100,000 are now in use. The kind of ventilators used in modern hospitals can cost up to $30,000, but the newly developed device can be produced for about $100, [...and...] for 98 percent of cases, this simple inexpensive device could do the job..."
What I hope is up next is for this project to go through our MIT Development Ventures process and turn into a viable, scalable venture spreading this technology widely!

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