As Covid-19 cases are rising once again, concerns surrounding the efficacy and availability of Personal Protective Equipment(PPE) for health care professionals charged with providing care for patients, are also top of mind.
An inexpensive device called the Bubble PAPR, has been developed by the intensive care unit at Wythenshawe Hospital under the umbrella of Manchester University NHS Foundation Trust in the UK.
The respirator system uses a reusable collar which sits around the neck together with a single-use (but recyclable) plastic hood. A built in fan draws air through a virus filter to deliver cooling airflow with superior visibility for the wearer.
The Bubble PAPR has been designed to provide exceptional infection control yet still be comfortable enough for staff to wear throughout a full shift in the ICU or other high-risk areas in hospitals and treatment centers. The unit has been tested in simulated clinical settings and received positive feedback from staff.
One of the features that has staff and patients singing it's praises is that the wearers face is clearly visible. This facilitates better communication, not only with staff, but also with patients and not least of all improves the patients experience while receiving treatment.
Dr Glen Cooper, from the University of Manchester, said:
"The Bubble PAPR is both ergonomically and mechanically the right product to meet the need to protect NHS staff during the COVID crisis and beyond."
Cite: Pavankumar Kamat. COVID-19: Innovative PPE Respirator Developed for ICU Staff - Medscape - Sep 18, 2020.