Home appliances company, Defy, intends to start production on ventilators from May this year. This is in an effort to assist with the coronavirus crisis in across South Africa and sub-Saharan Africa.
Earlier this month, the government called for urgent design, development and production of ventilators to help fight the current pandemic. “One of the identified shortages is the availability of ventilation systems appropriate for the treatment of the majority of patients presenting at health facilities,” said the Department of Trade and Industry.
“The National Ventilator Project (NVP) was launched in an attempt to rapidly develop and produce ventilation solutions for the pandemic,”it said. Defy’s efforts form part of this initiative.
According to Quartz, South Africa has around 6,000 ventilators with only 2,000 of these in the public hospitals.The supply chain for ventilators is facing an unprecedented demand. Local production of ventilators will ensure that they are readily available to use.
Along with stakeholder partners, Defy is in the process of finalising a design which can be used for mass production of this important piece of equipment.
Evren Albas, CEO of Defy Appliances said that the design includes parts which Defy uses in production of their other appliances.
“We believe that this gives us a unique advantage. Furthermore, Defy’s flexible manufacturing capabilities, together with the design and development expertise of the consortium with whom we are partnering, will allow us to fast-track ventilator production and distribution,” he told Business Insider.
“We also aim to expand the project beyond the borders of South Africa. Fortunately, the project consortium has influence and contacts in sub-Saharan Africa and we are hopeful that this ventilator will assist other African countries in fighting this global pandemic,” he added.
Image: Twitter / Medicine, Nursing & Health Sciences NUI Galway