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100 made-in-Saskatchewan ventilators coming soon to hospitals in that province

A collaborative effort by three major organizations helped make it possible to manufacture the devices locally and get them into health care facilities quickly.
By: Alison Larabie Chase
December 08, 2020
Photo: RMD.
Photo: RMD.

When the COVID-19 pandemic struck, health care workers across Canada expressed concern about an inadequate supply of ventilators, which are needed to support critically ill patients. Jim Boire, president of RMD Engineering in Saskatoon, happens to be the father of an ICU nurse, and brought the idea of manufacturing emergency-use ventilators locally to the table. Eventually their subsidiary, One Health Medical Technologies, began to collaborate with the University of Saskatchewan, where many of RMD’s engineers were trained, and with the Saskatchewan Health Authority (SHA), to bring the ventilator project to successful completion.

The USask Colleges of Engineering, Medicine, Law, and Western College of Veterinary Medicine all contributed knowledge, staff, and equipment to the work, as did the Respiratory Research Centre. The result of the collaboration is the EUV-SK1 ventilator, which has been approved for sale by Health Canada.

The first 20 production models should be ready this week and will be sent to the SHA to be used in acute-care facilities. The Saskatchewan-built ventilators are portable and can be moved between facilities to wherever they are most needed. A further 80 examples have already been purchased by the province, and One Health is authorized to sell them elsewhere in the Canadian health care market as well.

Source: University of Saskatchewan

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