Startup company Rapid Medical Parts developed a device that can convert CPAP machines for use as ventilators to treat COVID-19 patients in response to the ventilator shortage. However, unlike other institutions that came up with a similar solution, the company did it all through Zoom conferences with their partners. The twice daily Zoom meet ups with “aerospace guys,” a ventilator expert, and a doctor resulted in the Emergency Ventilator Solution (EVS-4).
“We’ve done all this without ever meeting each other face-to-face, without ever having more than one person in any room at any time, spread out between Salt Lake City, Florida, Arizona, California, Washington state, Connecticut, and Buffalo. The days are a blur. There are no weekends. We wrap up late in the evening and start back up first thing in the morning,” RMP CEO, former USAF Col. James Allen Regenor recalled in an interview.
According to Regenor, the EVS-4 device has 95% functionality of standard ventilators but can be produced for a fraction of its cost. Unlike similar devices which convert CPAPs for milder cases so that standard ventilators can be used for severe cases, the device can adjust the pressure it provides, which means it can be used for patients with mild to severe symptoms. The company has already submitted an application for an EUA from the FDA, but it is ready to produce 400-600 kits a day once it receives an FDA authorization.