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ITB-led team rolls out free distribution of Vent-I ventilators to COVID-19 hospitals

News Desk

The Jakarta Post

Jakarta  /  Tue, June 23, 2020  /  02:41 pm
ITB-led team rolls out free distribution of Vent-I ventilators to COVID-19 hospitals

A medical worker holds a Vent-I portable ventilator in this undated file photo. The Vent-I was developed and manufactured locally by a team led by the Bandung Institute of Technology (ITB), and has been certified by the Health Ministry for mass production. (Courtesy of ITB/via kompas.com)

The development team of the Vent-I portable ventilator has donated 139 Vent-I units to several hospitals treating COVID-19 patients across Indonesia, with hundreds of ventilators ready for distribution.

"Approximately 800 total Vent-I units will be distributed for free,” Hari Tjahjono, the spokesperson of the Vent-I development team, said on Monday as quoted by tempo.co.

The Vent-I was developed by the Bandung Institute of Technology (ITB) in collaboration with the Padjajaran University Medical School in West Java and the Pembina Mesjid Salman Foundation (YPM Salman), with funding from an ITB-sponsored charity.

The portable ventilator was designed for ease of use, primarily in treating COVID-19 patients experiencing shortness of breath who are still able to breathe on their own. The Vent-I is not intended for treating patients receiving intensive care.

Among the hospitals that received the device are the Dr. Hasan Sadikin Central General Hospital in Bandung and the Kemayoran Athletes Village COVID-19 emergency hospital in Jakarta. 

Of the 139 donated ventilators, 47 were distributed to hospitals in East Java, 44 to hospitals in West Java and 15 to hospitals in Central Java. The remaining 20 ventilators were donated to hospitals in Jakarta.

Read also: Indonesia looks to domestic innovations to tackle COVID-19

Hospitals in Banten received four ventilators, North Sumatra hospitals received three ventilators, and hospitals in Yogyakarta, Lampung and East Kalimantan received two ventilators each.

The Vent-I ventilators, which were developed and manufactured locally at a rapid pace, passed the quality assurance standards of the Health Ministry’s Health Research and Development Agency (Balitbangkes) in April.

The Vent-I also meets the Balitbangkes general safety standards for continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP), a ventilator's most vital function in keeping the patient's airway unobstructed so they can breathe freely. This functionality of the Vent-I may help reduce the number of patients requiring intensive care. 

The ministry has certified the new medical device for commercial production and distribution.

Hari said that PT Rekacipta Inovasi ITB (PT RII), a collaborative business entity involving ITB, state-owned enterprises and private companies, would be managing commercial mass production of the Vent-I.

As of Monday, Indonesia recorded 46,845 confirmed cases of COVID-19 and 2,500 deaths. Jakarta remains the epicenter of the Indonesian outbreak with a cumulative tally of 10,098 cases,  followed by East Java with 9,857 cases. (trn)

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