Hospitech Respiration, an Israeli startup that designed and manufactures a device to prevent health complications caused by ventilator usage, is offering their product to Israeli hospitals battling the coronavirus free of charge.
The AnapnoGuard device AG100s was developed to work alongside a ventilator in order to improve patient safety by preventing ventilator-enabled infections and limiting injuries caused by potential mechanical dysfunction. The AG100s is connected to the ventilator through an endotracheal tube and prevents the leakage of fluid from the oral cavity into the lungs by properly sealing the trachea and evacuating any secretions. Studies from Europe and Israel have highlighted the effectiveness of the device at minimising incidences of Ventilator Associated Pneumonia (VAP), which can be a cause of death for intubated patients.
The device has regulatory approval in the US, China, Europe and Israel - and is already used in ICUs and clinics specialising in cardiac support and organ transplants, such as the Mayo Clinic in Florida.
THE LARGER PICTURE
Israel was comparatively late in contracting COVID-19, with its first case confirmed on February 20th. Since then, official data cited 5,357 further cases have been confirmed, with half of those established after March 26th.
In terms of the projected epi curve, Israel is likely to see a spike in the number of cases and deaths in the coming weeks and therefore needs to be prepared for the increased strain on health services. Other countries, such as Italy and the UK, are currently suffering from a shortage of available medical supplies and protective gear amidst the crisis.
China, who also benefited from the use of the AG100s, were approximately six weeks ahead of Israel on the curve and have since seen a steady decline in the number of active cases and deaths.
ON THE RECORD
In a statement, the CEO of Hospitech Respirations, Yoav Venkert, explained the significance of the AG100s in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic:
“The device is designed to reduce complications that develop during ventilation, especially those arising from the aspiration of contaminated subglottic secretions to the lungs.
"This is one, if not the main cause of the development of pneumonia, one of the principle factors in mortality among Coronavirus patients. In addition, the device is intended to reduce mechanical damage and injuries to the tracheal wall that result from excessive pressure applied to the tracheal wall by the ETT cuff.”
He continued: “Now, with the Coronavirus outbreak, and the fact that above 5% of the patients require mechanical ventilation, we have decided to make the AG100s devices freely available to Israeli hospitals. If required, the company will provide devices and support to ICUs that treat ventilated Coronavirus patients.”