An emergency ventilator has a simpler construction than a traditional ventilator. It has the same necessary features but is not as high-tech as a traditional ventilator. The emergency ventilator is made of simpler components, and design and size are not considered important for emergency ventilators. Currently the ventilation mode offered and implemented is mandatory only and volume control mode with regulation of FiO2, Vt, I:E ratio and PEEP. Efforts are underway to allow for spontaneous breathing and pressure regulated modes via downloadable software modifications.
All CE-marked ventilators available in hospitals, at veterinarians, private hospitals and at university should be put into use before use of the AAU Pandemic Ventilator is considered. Once that capacity is exhausted and there is no possibility of obtaining additional ventilators, our AAU Pandemic Ventilator can be used. Like the existing CE-marked ventilators, the emergency ventilator is for patients who will die without a ventilator to help them breathe. Current use is for patients without spontaneous breathing activity who are deeply sedated, with attempts underway to support other modes.
NO. It requires trained medical staff to operate a ventilator correctly.
Yes, it does. But it doesn’t require as much expertise as a traditional ventilator due to the simple ventilator modes supported. This is a trade-off, simplicity against improved functionality. In the crisis situation simplicity may be an advantage at a time when trained respiratory staff are in very high demand.
The need depends on how the pandemic develops and our capacity in terms of the existing ventilators. The majority of ventilators in Denmark are now allocated to use for COVID-19 patients if this becomes necessary. It remains for the proper authorities to assess what stock of emergency ventilators Denmark requires as part of the country’s crisis response plan.
Aalborg University has funds for the researchers to buy parts for between 25-40 ventilators depending on the final cost price. If further are required, this may be possible with industry led production with the assistance of Danish companies.
No one has the right answer or the ability to foresee this precisely. The answer depends upon the current development of the COVID-19 pandemic and how the virus affects the global community during the coming months. According to World Economic Forum, 77.000 new ventilators where brought to the global market last year. In April, New York City alone forecast an additional need of 30.000 ventilators. In total demand is expected to rise by 500-1000 pct. This extra demand is unlikely to be met by manufacturers alone. They are currently boosting their production with 50-100 pct. Therefore, there could be a need for the open source AAU Pandemic Ventilator or similar projects.
We have approval from the Danish Medicines Agency for the CoRESCUE AAU Pandemic Ventilator to be exempt from CE marking requirements for use on COVID-19 patients in the current crisis situation. Based on our current experience producing prototypes, we expect producers to be able to be able to meet a greater need using their large-scale production facilities.
Six people can manually build three emergency ventilators a day. In the case of production on a larger scale, a company must be given time to convert its production system before it can deliver working emergency ventilators. A cautious estimate would be a few weeks. We welcome potential partners to the CoRESCUE project to ensure options for fast, larger scale production. Please read more here
The CoRESCUE AAU Pandemic Ventilator is tested on an artificial lung that simulates various forms of lung disease – including severe pneumonia, as is the case in patients with COVID-19. Using the open source specifications and guidelines available here, a skilled engineer will be able to build and assemble the ventilator. After that it just requires power and supplies of air and oxygen. The AAU Pandemic Ventilator also has an emergency battery feature.
The ventilator consists of various components – valve systems, sensors, an electronic control unit, etc. – that must work together in a special way in order for the emergency ventilator to be fully functional. For example, that the air entering the patient’s lungs must do so with a certain pressure. We have developed programming of the electronics to control the machine for all to use. Before using the AAU Pandemic Ventilator please see the terms and conditions for doing so here and follow your national guidelines for approval of emergency medical devices.
If the AAU Pandemic Ventilator is to be produced in large numbers, this will be done in conjunction with the Confederation of Danish Industry. They have the necessary knowledge on which companies can handle a production like this. We have large companies in Denmark that already manufacture pumps, valves, circuit boards, etc.
We estimate the manual construction of an emergency ventilator will cost approximately 4000 EURO in materials. Add to that the cost of manpower and/or production facility.
Yes, nothing in the permissive open source license prevents a manufacturer from recovering their costs or make a profit from producing the AAU Pandemic Ventilator. Because the design is openly available and we will help anyone who makes a credible and serious attempt to produce it, we expect this to be self-regulating. We hope that if a manufacturer charges an excessive price for the ventilator this will encourage others to produce it at a lower price. We also have a strong opinion that the AAU Pandemic Ventilator should be made available at a price that reflects its simple and relatively inexpensive construction, and we reserve the right to prioritize our help to those manufacturers that uphold these principles.
It is designed to be made available as ‘open source’. This means that we make the construction, design, testing, drawings, etc., available on the Internet and to other universities and health authorities so that it can be produced anywhere in the world, as needed.
The AAU Pandemic Ventilator is a relatively simple machine that is simple to build. It is our hope that an ordinary machine factory could build it, and that companies that are not technologically advanced will also be able to produce this emergency ventilator.