Mercedes has produced 100 breathing aid devices aimed at keeping COVID-19 patients out of the ICU, under Formula 1’s Project Pitlane initiative.
As already reported, seven UK-based Formula 1 teams, including Mercedes, have answered British Government’s call for help in the coronavirus fight. In less than 1000 hours Mercedes helped develop a Continuous Positive Airway Pressure (CPAP) device which has been approved for use in the NHS.
The device was produced in conjunction with Mercedes High Performance Powertrains, mechanical engineers at University College London, and clinicians at University College London Hospital and is aimed at keeping COVID-19 patients out of intensive care units. 100 units will undergo clinical testing and subsequently be delivered for use in hospitals.
Managing director of Mercedes HPP Andy Cowell says his team is proud to be able to help in these difficult times.
“The Formula 1 community has shown an impressive response to the call for support, coming together in the ‘Project Pitlane’ collective to support the national need at this time across a number of different projects,” said Cowell.
“We have been proud to put our resources at the service of UCL to deliver the CPAP project to the highest standards and in the fastest possible timeframe.”
UCLH critical care consultant Professor Mervyn Singer emphasized the importance of these devices.
“These devices will help to save lives by ensuring that ventilators, a limited resource, are used only for the most severely ill,” said Professor Singer.
“While they will be tested at UCLH first, we hope they will make a real difference to hospitals across the UK by reducing demand on intensive care staff and beds, as well as helping patients recover without the need for more invasive ventilation.”