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March 2020: Code Life Ventilator Challenge

The novel coronavirus, known as COVID-19, could infect up to 70% of the population, with as many as about 10% of positive cases need ventilation. Currently, however, there is an acknowledged shortage of medical ventilators worldwide.
 

The Montreal General Hospital Foundation in collaboration with the Research Institute of the McGill University Health Centre (MUHC) launched a global innovation challenge - Code Life Ventilator Challenge.  This challenge is calling for teams to design a simple, low-cost, easy-to-manufacture and easy-to-maintain ventilator, which could be deployed anywhere needed to save lives.
 

Ontario Tech University is up to this challenge. A group of researchers, students and clinicians (medical doctors and respiratory technicians) are responding to this challenge and currently designing innovative 3D printed ventilators.  To this end, the design is managed by the Advanced Digital Manufacturing Laboratory (ADML) and Machining Research Laboratory (MRL) at the Faculty of Engineering and Applied Science.  Medical doctors from Lakeridge Health  and respiratory technicians from McGill and Faculty of Health Sciences, Ontario Tech University  provide expert advice, while maxSIMhealth facilitates the collaboration and research support.


In addition to participating in the challenge, maxSIMhealth is working to publish our proposal as technical reports on our channel in the The Cureus Journal of Medical Science: Archives of Simulation and make them freely available to the public.


Teams  

There are three teams, led by Drs. Barari, Hosseini, Wang. These three teams work independently but they efforts are synchronized through frequent on-line meetings with the expert panel. The overall goal of the teams is to introduce a family of ventilator design using a common design platform.  To this end, the teams are developing three prototypes of the ventilators that use similar design, yet different strategies.

 

Team 1

Faculty lead: Dr. Barari from Advanced Digital Manufacturing Laboratory (ADML) Faculty of Engineering and Applied Science


Students: Dylan Bender ,  Lillian Goodwin ,  Tyler Beadle 


Strategy: This team's general approach is to design the components in a way that they will be manufacturable even in a remote location using the most commonly available equipment and material. This will create a self-contained manufacturing process that relies to a minimal extend on availability of sensors and industrial components. Using the available 3D printing technologies is a general theme in this approach and many parts are specifically designed to be easily 3D printed.  


Team 2

Faculty lead: Dr. Hosseini  from Machining Research Laboratory (MRL), Faculty of Engineering and Applied Science


Students: Ben DeBoer, Jason Mcleod, Brooke East, Nguyen Nam,  

Jonathan Tse


Strategy:  This team's approach is to use as many readily available off-the-shelf electronic sensors and industrial components as possible. This approach ensures high industry standards, reduces the manufacturing and assembly time, and delivers large quantity of ventilators in a short period of time when off-the-shelf components are accessible. However, the manufacturing of this prototype can be hindered by the availability and cost of these components. In this approach, the team is also aiming to include readily available recyclable components in order to reduce manufacturing costs and time.


Team 3

Faculty leads: Drs. Wang and Dubrowski from  maxSIMhealth, Health Tech Lab, Faculty of Health Sciences and Dr. Bruno Gino from Brazil.


Strategy:  This design converts a manual resuscitator into an automatic ventilator. The purpose to design this ventilator is to provide a temporary solution when a normal ventilator is not available. It can be run by a motor, or a mechanical crank.


Summary

All three approaches have their own strengths and weaknesses, but by being part of a common design platform, they can be used almost interchangeably. The choices between these three approaches may be dictated by contextual factors such as desired speed of manufacturing, availability of sensors and industrial components, life span of the ventilator, costs and accuracy.



Updates

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March 24th Update:


We have a new team member: Dr. Bruno Gino from Brazil! Dr. Gino is an emergency physician with expertise in disaster medicine. He will ensure that our designs meet international needs!

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March 31th Update:


Dr. Wang, a current post doctoral fellow with maxSIMhealth partnered with Dr. Gino to make a third prototype! Now we have the entire family of ventilators.

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April 1st Update:


Big thank you to the RTs, docs and nurses, and simulation staff at Lakeridge Health for providing us with pieces of equipment to connect the ventilators!  Real heros, who work as front line battle with COVID-19 and take time to hep us.

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April 1st Update:


Final stretch. The deadline is today at midnight. I want to note the commitment of the students - they carried the project on their shoulders putting in 20+ hours a day over the past 10 days. 

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April 2rd Update: 


Two of our teams finally entered the challenge. After the initial round, both advanced as top 10% of prototypes to round 2! Go teams Ontario Tech!


We have decided to publish the third design instead entering it into the challenge, Because of the simplicity of the design we want to make it available on the market as soon as possible!


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April 3rd Update: 

Team 3 has finalized their design:  

Automated Inflating Resuscitator (AIR). After the weekend we will be putting it together and testing it! Some components are being printed and others are in the mail!

Expert Research and Clinical Panel

  The expert panel consisting of ICU and ER doctors, respiratory therapists and researchers works with both teams to ensure technical performance, clinical relevance, validity, and usability.

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Dr. Randy Wax

Dr. Mika Nonoyama

Dr. Mika Nonoyama

Lakeridge Health

Oshawa, Ontario

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Dr. Mika Nonoyama

Dr. Mika Nonoyama

Dr. Mika Nonoyama

 Faculty of Health Sciences

Ontario Tech University

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Dr. Adam Dubrowski

Dr. Mika Nonoyama

Dr. Adam Dubrowski

 maxSIMhealth;

 Faculty of Health Sciences

Ontario Tech University

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Dr. Bruno Gino

Marco Zaccagnini, RRT/CCAA. MSc.

Dr. Adam Dubrowski

Emergency Physician,

Disaster Medicine

Brazil

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Marco Zaccagnini, RRT/CCAA. MSc.

Marco Zaccagnini, RRT/CCAA. MSc.

Marco Zaccagnini, RRT/CCAA. MSc.

McGill University Health Centre

School of Physical and Occupational Therapy McGill University