COVID 19 Ventilator Shortage.
COVID -19 pandemic is an infectious disease that is caused by a coronavirus and is highly contagious. It began in Wuhan in China in December 2019. The infection has spread in more than 200 countries infecting millions of individuals and causing more than a hundred thousand deaths.
A ventilator is medical equipment that provides respiratory support to patients, whose lungs have been severely compromised by the infection, leading to breathing complications.
The ventilator supplies oxygen in the lungs and helps to regulate the breathing process of the patient. A humidifier is used in ventilators specifically to add moisture and heat to the oxygen so as it can match the body temperature of the patient.
There two types of medical ventilators, invasion mechanical ventilation, and non-invasion ventilation. The invasion of mechanical ventilators forces oxygen to flow in small air passages of the inflamed lungs of the patient who experience difficulty in breathing.
It uses an endotracheal tube which is inserted in the trachea to allow the flow of oxygen into the patient’s lungs. A non-invasion ventilator is used to manage less severe COVID-19 patients.
COVID-19 outbreak has led to a shortage of ventilators because the number of patients who require respiratory care has also increased. Globally, health care systems are experiencing shortages and especially countries that are extremely hit by the pandemic.
The situation is alarming and the shortage is due to issues related to global chain supply. The countries exporting medical equipment like the ventilators have come to a halt since the production of the medical equipment requires more intensive capital and expertise.
As the respiratory illness caused by COVID-19 continues to spread worldwide, national governments and healthcare systems are facing a lot of difficulty in obtaining the ventilators to support the patients.
There is a need to innovate the application of addictive medicine like 3D printer technology which will ensure the availability of the ventilators for future use in case of a viral outbreak.