In the spring of 2020, at the height of the COVID-19 crisis in Madrid, patients were tragically dying waiting for available ventilators. Juan Angel Muñoz López, RN, a nursing supervisor in Madrid, worked with a team that modified a CPAP machine to help COVID patients requiring oxygen.
Working quickly, his team searched a supply closet and identified materials to modify a CPAP machine-typically used for sleep apnea. The modified CPAP was capable of raising patients’ blood oxygen above 90%, preventing the need to put a patient on a ventilator.
But the pieces to create the modified CPAP were too expensive to reproduce at the scale needed.
One of the components of their modified machine came from an expensive nebulizer. Angel worked quickly with engineer Dr. Luis Miguel Peñalver, MakerHealth co-founder Jose Gómez Márquez, and intensivist Dr. Jose Andres Cambronero Galache to design and 3D print a T-joint connector at low cost.
With help from HP, several hundred of Angel’s designs were made, and, as a result, several hundred patients were treated using the modified CPAP machine.
COVID forced clinicians all over the world to find effective solutions to a growing, unprecedented health crisis. In turn, these clinicians, including Angel and his team in Spain, came up with solutions that have saved hundreds of lives.
Clinicians with determination, fabrication tools, and input from MedTech experts are capable of creating life-saving devices.
MakerHealth is dedicated to this growing community of health makers who are creating the devices to ultimately save lives.