The rapid spread of Covid-19 has disrupted health centers around the planet by increased demand for systems that help critical patients’ oxygen supply – ventilators. In addition to being relatively expensive, hospital ventilators are hard to obtain on the market and replacement parts for existing ventilators could not be acquired. For this reason, we voluntarily developed Dive4Life, a modification of full-face snorkeling masks solution which can be applied in hospital conditions. They are already in use and it really made us proud to see the satisfaction of the employees at the Military Medical Academy in Belgrade after we delivered first masks.
Why Dive4Life is so beneficial? In the absence of ventilators and in order to reduce the costs, the solution is modification of commercial snorkeling masks that cover the entire face, with the help of a 3D printed extensions that is attached to the mask instead of a standard factory blower. Such masks could be used as:
- Substitute for ventilators, by directly connecting it to a source of oxygen in hospitals;
- A replacement part for existing ventilators, so-called balloon;
- Protection for the medical staff.
It is important to note that 3D printing method does not justify mass production at this time, and fine tuning of the extension is possible along the way. The extension can be printed in environmentally friendly non-toxic PLA biodegradable plastic and disinfected with ethanol, while the mask itself can be sterilized by autoclave process or disinfected with ethanol or a mix of water and bleach. The available system is significantly cheaperthan existing medical devices, it is easier to procure the necessary parts and it can be available in a very short time for a large number of patients and medical professionals.
We made this small effort of help because we believe in the key role that medical workers play in all attempts to stop the pandemic, not just in Serbia, but all around the world. Yet the pandemic is not just about doctors, it is about all of us. Only with joint efforts we can defeat it. Please stay responsible, keep the distance, and wear a mask.