The 3D printed valves, indispensable for intensive care respirators, were born by chance, or it would be better to say, out of necessity. The Chiari Hospital was gone and people were dying, the ordinary way of supplying standard pieces was not practicable for a reason of time, and so Fracassi and his team, specifying on Facebook that he and his colleagues they don’t want to be called heroes or geniuses, they invented 3D valves. Which have proven effective, ending up on the pages of international media.
The news also came to the former head of the Gardone Valtrompia Hospital, Dr. Renato Favero, who proposed the team to convert diving masks into respiratory masks, as Fracassi specifies on his fb profile:
“And here is a retired hospital primary, Dr. Renato Favero, rang at our door, gave us an anatomy lesson on the functioning of the lungs, alveoli, viruses and pneumonia, and then asked us to help him in the task of transforming diving masks into breathing masks for use in the hospital. Needless to say our answer: we worked on it day and night, Isinnova got the sixth gear and in less than 10 hours we had the prototype that two Brescian hospitals are testing these days. We would like to wait for the results of all the tests (so far positive) but we think that every minute is crucial. Doctors, nurses, hospitals, spread it, study it and help us improve it: we will keep you updated on how to implement this new idea (always for free). “
At first the company contacted Decathlon, “as the creator, manufacturer and distributor of the Easybreath snorkeling mask“, Which immediately became available to provide the CAD drawing of the mask, the product was then dismantled, studied and evaluated. We then moved on to the design of the new component for the connection to the respirator, called the Charlotte valve, printed in 3d. Prototype that turned out to be functional after being tested on a colleague and a sick patient.
The company has decided to patent the connection valve to prevent speculation on the price of the component but wants the patent to remain free to use so that all hospitals in need can take advantage of it. He also shared the file with instructions for making the fitting in 3D printing, which they say is easy to make. In this way, healthcare facilities can purchase Decathlon masks and have the 3D printers make the necessary part to complete them.
A truly precious help that could save many human lives!
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