A group of clinicians, medtech researchers, and companies based in Galway, Ireland, has developed a system that allows two patients to use one ventilator, essentially doubling the effectiveness of existing ventilator stocks during the current COVID-19 pandemic.
Called the Galway VentShare system, the technology consists of viral filters, valves, tubing, CO2 sensors, and pressure and flow meters, which allows two patients to be safely ventilated with independent parameters, such as tidal volume control.
Galway is a significant hub for medical technology development. Some of the world’s largest producers of ventilators, including Medtronic, are based in Galway, and a significant proportion of the world’s ventilators are produced there. Consequently, there is a significant level of relevant expertise among medtech developers and researchers in the city.
This team has created the VentShare system to address the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. While sharing a ventilator between two patients isn’t something that a hospital would need to do under normal circumstances, the system is conceived to address the current ventilator shortage. The group has said that their solution is a safe option for emergency situations, and it includes viral filters to prevent cross-contamination between patients.
As the system uses ventilator components that should be readily available in a hospital setting, the design can be easily replicated by hospitals around the world. Patient settings can be controlled using an open-source app, making it easy to fine tune the ventilation for each patient independently.
Watch a demonstration of the system below.
Via: Galway VentShare