Aerospace precision engineering and manufacturing company Aequs announced the launch of AQoventTM, a medical-grade, low-cost, and mass-produced mechanical resuscitator. AQoventTM is an oxygen-driven emergency resuscitator that can provide constant-flow, pressure-cycled ventilation automatically to patients in respiratory distress. Aequs is manufacturing these resuscitators in India based on the license procured on the concept design from the University of Illinois, U.S.A.
The company has committed to deliver 2,000 units per month to start with and is looking at a phased distribution to Government Hospitals, Health Authorities, Government e-Sourcing platforms, Ambulance Services and NGO’s in Tier II & Tier III markets across Karnataka. The distribution plan for AQoventTM follows a not-for-profit model. Following the surge in demand, the company intends to scale up its production to 10,000 units per month.
Today, as the country battles the COVID-19 pandemic, this collaboration with the University of Illinois was initiated to contest one of the main challenges in the current medical system. The challenge is the extensive reliance on a small segment of suppliers for specialized, proprietary, mass-produced resuscitators. This dependence has created a wide gap in the supply-demand model of these specialty products.
Aravind Melligeri, Chairman & CEO, Aequs, said, “We stand in solidarity with the government and medical fraternity in the country’s fight against the Covid-19 pandemic. AQoventTM one of Aequs’ timely innovations, is a low-cost and indigenously developed resuscitator, operates without a power source, and is hassle-free. The design lends itself to a level of scalability, enabling us to ramp up production to meet the surge in demand”.
Fulfilling its responsibility towards the community, Aequs has stepped up to leverage its ‘Aerospace’ and ‘Consumer Divisions’ capabilities in its vertically integrated ecosystem at the Special Economic Zone in Belagavi, Karnataka, to manufacture AQoventTM A dedicated team of cross-functional engineers at Aequs have pooled in their collective expertise.
AQoventTM is engineered to suit Indian conditions without compromising its functional integrity and to enable the ease of manufacturing and reduce the lead time, thereby making it conducive for mass production. The device operates directly of oxygen, making it ideal for deployment in non-electriﬁed locations (also in an ambulance as it is portable) and in situations with limited medical facilities. These single-use resuscitators are compact and easily deployable for treating patients affected by the virus and other respiratory conditions.
“The launch of the AQoventTM and its potential for impact is inspiring. We are delighted that Aequs can leverage the Illinois RapidVent to aid in the fight against COVID-19,” said William King, leader of the Illinois RapidVent project and Professor in the University of Illinois’ Grainger College of Engineering.
“We are thrilled that a design created by a team of engineers at the University of Illinois’ Grainger College of Engineering will be used to help those around the world,” Grainger Engineering Dean Rashid Bashir said. “This is exactly what our engineers had in mind during our process and we are looking forward to seeing the impact it will have in India.”
To ensure readiness for the market, the product has undergone multiple rounds of pre-clinical and clinical trials, including endurance, performance, and product calibration testing.
“We believe this innovation will go a long way in democratizing the response to the pandemic. This product is the result of a shared goal at Aequs to help save lives during these tumultuous times. It is a testament to what can be achieved through the culmination of engineering prowess, enterprise, collaboration, and the spirit of innovation,” said Mr. Melligeri.
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