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Our coverage on COVID‑19

Petronas works with MOH to develop breathing aid

Following the breathing aid developed by the Mercedes F1 team in the U.K., Petronas has tweeted that they are working towards developing a continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) prototype for COVID-19 patients. This comes after the MOH shared on Facebook of a conference between the Ministry and Petronas that aimed to discuss the need of a CPAP machine that could help Covid-19 patients breathe easier.

The new breathing aid can help as a less invasive method to deliver air and oxygen to patients’ lungs and the it would lessen the dependency on ventilators.

Petronas’ upcoming CPAP prototype is originally developed by their partner, the Mercedes F1 team, and University College London (UCL). Mercedes’ breathing aid was produced within 100 hours from the initial meeting to the production of the first device, and the company can produce 1000 a day within a week.

However, this also raises up the same concern during the development of Mercedes’ CPAP; possible spray droplets from patients’ airways on to clinical staff if the breathing aids had any small leaks.

But UCLH critical care consultant Professor Mervyn Singer has mentioned that the risk of transmitting the virus through such droplets should be “very low” if care staff were wearing appropriate personal protective equipment.

There is no word yet to when the prototypes will be done, or when they can be used for trials in Malaysian hospitals.

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