Ventilators & COVID-19
Vigorous efforts to produce large quantities in order to meet global demand to counter the novel coronavirus
The demand for ventilators has increased in light of the coronavirus outbreak and the need for these machines in the intensive care units for Covid-19 patients. The global demand for the production of a new generation has increased, urging global producing companies to play an effective role in this field to help patients with coronavirus stay alive and to meet the global demand after the virus had spread all over the world. Since the beginning of the pandemic, the producing companies have intended to produce thousands of ventilators that meet the needs of most patients with coronavirus.
What is a ventilator? How important is it for patients with coronavirus? Are there certain characteristics that must be available in order to meet these needs?
A ventilator is a machine that provides mechanical ventilation by moving oxygenated air into the lungs to help patients who cannot breathe on their own.
This machine is not a cure for a disease. Doctors resort to it to stabilize the patient’s condition until he becomes better and able to fight the virus while taking the necessary drug treatments to reduce the worsening of the health situation. Usually, most of the patients with coronavirus use ventilators for a period of one to two weeks. The machine takes over the body’s breathing process, which gives the patient time to fight the virus and recover.
The ventilator introduces oxygen into the lungs and expels carbon dioxide via a tube placed into the lungs through the mouth or nose. In some serious or long-term cases, the breathing tube is placed through a small surgically made hole in the neck and into the trachea.
It is known that this new virus primarily attacks the respiratory system, causing the patient to lose his ability to breathe normally. The virus may damage the lungs, causing the immune system to expand blood vessels to allow more white blood cells in. This expansion may introduce fluids into the lungs, which increases the difficulty of breathing and reduces the levels of oxygen in the body.
As the medical condition worsens, the respiratory system needs to be supported by using simpler means such as providing oxygen-rich air to the body through a face mask.
However, more severe cases require more advanced options. If the patient suffers from severe respiratory distress, a tube connected to the ventilator is inserted into the bottom of the trachea to support the respiratory system.
Here comes the role of the ventilator that pushes air into the lungs and increases the levels of oxygen. Today, there is a new type of smart ventilators that work automatically and consist of a computer that is installed on a wheeled cart that contains screens, data cables, power wires, and air tubes. This type of ventilator helps the medical team to provide a high level of medical care, as it is modern and advanced and has several features such as the respiratory rate, setting the mode (AC or SIMV), tidal volume, FiO2, and PEEP.