Ventilators and other critical emergency respiratory devices have surfaced as some of the most critical pieces of equipment used in the fight against Covid-19, and since the likes of Dyson and University College London separately announced their manufacturing of the devices, we’re pleased to report that a great many more companies have come forward and pledged to do the same.
Just this week, defence firm Babcock said that it will be manufacturing 10,000 ventilators to help deal with the crisis, saying in a statement, that it had ‘responded quickly to the UK Prime Minister’s UK Ventilator Challenge’.
Jon Hall, Managing Director of Technology for Babcock, said: “This is a critical time for the country as a whole and for the NHS in particular. When the opportunity arose for us to get involved in helping the NHS to save lives, we knew it was the right thing to do. I’m really proud of the commitment and innovation of everyone in the team, across Babcock and our medical and supply chain partners.
“Combining our engineering expertise with advances in medical technology has resulted in a solution that will help the NHS save lives. That capability, combined with a diverse supply chain will ensure that we can get this equipment manufactured, processed and delivered as a matter of urgency.”
Car manufacturers are also getting involved in the production of critical ventilator devices. US-based electric car manufacturer Tesla, headed by Elon Musk, is in the throes of producing ventilators – however, these devices use parts adapted from electric vehicles. Given that the devices have yet to be tested and approved by use by the US Food and Drug Administration, it’s not clear when these will be produced in a high volume.
According to the firm’s Twitter account, US-based medical device company Medtronic is collaborating with Tesla to produce these ventilators for Covid-19 patients.
In addition, GM and Ford are also planning to produce ventilator parts – and experts insist that these are most crucial. “It’s not a final ventilating manufacturing problem. It’s a parts problem,” ventilator maker Mick Farrell said in an interview on CNBC on 1 April. “When we get genuine offers from automotive companies, aerospace companies and defence companies, and we’ve had hundreds of offers, we say fantastic! Don’t make a ventilator and buy these parts. Make these 10 parts for us and let us scale, which we can, between us and our competitors, to meet the demands of Covid-19.”