Manual Ventilation is the only option in a large portion of the World. This is often performed with an Ambu kit that often comprises of a squeezable plastic bottle and a face mask technically called CPAP. The bottle often is fed air or a mixture of air and oxygen.
For those that have never operated an Ambu bag system let us inform you that it is tough, and your hands soon tire. Hence, in many parts of the world necessity dictates that a whole family will take turns to operate the ventilator. Sadly, with infections such as Covid-19 the process can take days and even weeks before the patient either recovers or passes away.
With viral diseases such as SARS, Coronavirus and Ebola the exhalation from the patient can leak from around the facial seal when using the CPAP technique spreading the virus as an atomised spray, exposing those manipulating the ventilator to the almost certain risk of infection and in the case of Ebola the risk of death.
Automated ventilators not only provide improved outcomes for the patients but can also significantly reduce the exposure of both medical staff and family. Automation simply permits distancing and thereby minimise the risk of the infection spreading.
If this is what our team could do in a few hours just imagine what we are working on now!
We a currently building upon our specification to deliver affordable rapid ventilation to the World
It is paramount to obtain the maximum life out of each bag by simulating as close as possible the bags original intended operating conditions, that of a hand with fingers. Hence at the core of our mechanism is the automated hand like lever arm with three fingers.
Using a compact, double cam arrangement above, we have been able to convert the reciprocating movement of a wiper motor into a precision step motion whereby the hand is moved up and down without the need for the large cams as used in the many other designs.
Our mechanism can be dismantled and reassembled in under a minute! No tools are require to replace the motor or the main "hand" assembly.
With the Field Ventilator uniquely both the BPM breath per minute and inhalation (I) period is governed by the velocity of the cam. This is a significant advantage over other low budget designs which must be stopped to change a cam wheel or adjust the rates.
As the velocity of the cam with the Field Ventilator is a direct function of motor speed, the simplest way to alter both the BPM and the I phase of the ventilation cycle is to use a simple speed controller.
The essence of ventilation is a bi-phase process. There is an inhalation period called the I phase where air / oxygen flows from the ventilator to the patient and then a period where the flow is reversed where the stale air exits from the patient (exhaled) and is vented to atmosphere, the E phase.
With the Field ventilator there is a simple $10 timer circuit that senses the position of the cam and sets the E Phase without the need to change cam wheels. The trace opposite was recorded at the UK's National Physical Laboratory (NPL) during early evaluation testing of the MKI showing a near perfect 1:3 I to E ratio.
A ventilator in a carry case - that's our objective , for use any time, any place anywhere 24/7/365.