The National Aeronautics and Space Administration announced on Thursday that, in just 37 days, it has successfully developed a prototype ventilator that can be used in the treatment of COVID-19 patients. The so-called VITAL – a familiar locally for ventilator intervention technology – still requires FDA approval, and is intended to exempt more traditional ventilators for severe COVID cases.
“We concentrate in spacecraft, maybe not medical-device fabricating,” NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory Director Michael Watkins explained in a press release. “However, superb technology, rigorous testing and rapid prototyping are a few of our specialties.”
Notably, the very important apparatus really isn’t the marginally altered BiPAPs and CPAPs — more broadly utilized as a treatment for sleep apnea — given by Elon Musk. It’s made to be utilized in an invasive fashion, though it won’t continue so long as a more conventional ventilator.
“Like most ventilators, VITAL needs patients to be sedated and a oxygen tube inserted in their airway to breathe,” explains NASA. “The new device would not replace present hospital ventilators, which may last decades and are constructed to deal with a wider array of health care difficulties. Rather, VITAL is meant to last a few months and is especially tailored to COVID-19 patients”
Notably, based on NASA, the VITAL has been”made to utilize parts now available to prospective makers but not compete with the present supply chain of made ventilators.”
This is an important facet of the plan, as ventilator maker Dräger clarified to News in March.
“New production lines will only generate additional production if the supply industry is even doubled,” said well-known spokeswoman Melanie Kaman, “which is impossible in the short term from a regulatory merit point of view.”
Using non-traditional components, NASA’s team has found a way around this real obstacle.
So what is next? Now the ventilator was created, the question is when and if it will enter production. The Office of Technology Transfer and Corporate Partnerships at Caltech is offering a free VITAL permit, also is in the process of calling the medical sector to understand what businesses are thinking about producing the device.