Doctors and their supporting staff members at hospitals worldwide are at great risk while treating COVID19 patients. Conventionally, they wear PPE kit while intubating each patient. Healthcare community is employing a new, reusable protective device very recently, namely “Aerosol box”. This device helps anesthesiologists and other physicians while intubating patients by protecting them from aerosols and droplets containing the virus. In this way, spilling of internal secretions from patients during the insertion and discharge of tubings can be reduced. The device typically consists of a transparent box that slips over the patient’s head and shoulders having dedicated openings/holes for access/airway management. These boxes are reusable and easy to sanitize.
Work done at NIT Calicut
With the basic template available from the literature, and looking into the specific requirements from the doctors at the Department of Anesthesiology, Govt. Medical College Kozhikode, the NIT Calicut team has adopted an acrylic box design having dimension of 25x20x20 inches (length X breadth X height, respectively). Transparent acrylic sheets having 4 mm thickness has been used for the fabrication. The access holes have a dimension of 10 inches. The fabrication procedure is simple and economical, with a cost of Rs. 3,500-4,000/- per box.
A short video about the fabrication with complete technical details on developing these boxes has been uploaded on the official YouTube channel of NIT Calicut as well.
The first box had been delivered to the Govt. Medical College Kozhikode on 30th March 2020, and the doctors have successfully completed its testing. By 2nd April 2020, ten more boxes have been delivered to Govt. Medical College Kozhikode, and further discussions for improvements are ongoing. This is currently being used not only at Govt. Medical College Kozhikode, but also at several hospitals in different parts of Kerala. The whole activities are coming under the Unnat Bharat Abhiyan initiative of MHRD, GOI. Selected photos related to this initiative are given below.
Aerosol boxes being used at Govt. Medical College Kozhikode, Team members:
Dr. Biji KP (Associate Professor, Department of Anesthesia, Govt. Medical College Kozhikode) suggested the basic design (from the literature) and the specific requirements to NITC team. Members at NITC include Dr. Subramanyan N V (Asst. Prof, Physics and UBA coordinator), Mr Muhammed Shafeeque Rahman (PhD Scholar, School of Materials Science and Engineering), Dr. Hanas. T (Asst Prof, School of Materials Science and Engineering), Dr Sajith. V (Assoc. Prof, School of Materials Science and Engineering), and Dr Jimmy Jose (Assoc. Prof, Computer Science and Engineering Department).
NIT Calicut is ready to share all the details to UBA Participating Institutes who is interested and would like to encourage all concerned to make use of this device for helping the medical professionals across the nation and globe.
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