Hospitals need more ventilators to treat Covid-19 patients. Cat ventilators may do.

Human ventilator
Human ventilator. Pic in public domain.
Two useful tags. Click either to see the articles: Toxic to cats | Dangers to cats

This is thinking laterally and the idea comes from a Devon-based business in the market for manufacturing animal ventilators. The business is Vetronic Services. In an interview with a journalist from the Scotsman, Mr Simpson said that he had spoken with medical professionals and it appears to be feasible to use their ventilators for humans.

Ventilators for companion cats and dogs are less sophisticated than the human versions but they’ll do the job perhaps with a few minor modifications. As the world is crying out for more ventilators, because Covid-19 hinders breathing due to lung inflammation, desperate times need desperate measures.

The device they make for cats and dogs is called the Merlin.

Simpson said:

The human field in terms of respiratory control is way above that in the animal field – they have a lot of modes and features on their machines that veterinary ventilators don’t have. However, the machines like the Merlin and others will provide a volume cycle quite adequately for human patients.

Other manufacturing businesses have been asked to get involved in manufacturing ventilators. It is an ambitious ask as there are stringent regulations for these devices. To retool from making e.g. kettles or motorbikes to making sophisticated medical equipment is a big ask. Yes, these are difficult times. However, people must remain calm and not become overly fearful as it can drive people to misbehave such as the massive overpurchasing of longlasting foods and household items to the detriment of others.

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