IIIT-Bhubaneswar Students develop SWASNER, a first-of-its-kind helmet-like ventilation device

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Bhubaneswar: The outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic has added to the infrastructural challenges being faced by the healthcare industry. With little or no significant breakthrough in finding the cure to COVID-19 so far, countries across the globe are finding it difficult to control the pandemic. Given the surge in the number of COVID-19 cases, the demand for ventilators has hit an all-time high, with governments and hospitals struggling to meet the demand. There is a dire need for quick and effective respiratory ventilators given the acute shortage accentuated by the pandemic.

To address this shortage, a group of engineering students from IIIT – Bhubaneswar have developed SWASNER, a first-of-its-kind helmet-like ventilation device for patients suffering from Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome (ARDS). Unlike regular devices, SWASNER can be used without a ventilator by directly plugging in to available oxygen ports at hospitals and thereby help reserve the existing ventilators for the critical patients. In fact, according to research conducted by University of Chicago Medicine, patients demonstrate a better recovery rate by wearing helmet-shaped ventilator masks than regular ventilator support.

Further, the team has conducted trials at a hospital in Cuttack, and has also applied for a patent for the design and technology.

SWASNER Factsheet:

· SWASNER is a state of the art, modified hyperbaric chamber which can help the patient breathe better than CPAP/BiPAP face masks.

· SWASNER can be used without a ventilator by directly plugging in to available oxygen ports at hospitals and thereby help reserve the existing ventilators for the more critical patients.

· When not being used in lieu of a ventilator, the device can also be used to make a PPE-kit, by connecting to an air pump instead of an oxygen supply point.

· SWASNER is free of maintenance, economical (can be priced at INR 1,800 per piece) and easy to use

· The product is reusable after following standard disinfection procedure.

· The product has got accolades and recognitions from both India and abroad. The team had also participated in Kerala Startup Mission Hackathon.

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