Rice University students design a device that helps provide relief as coronavirus patients wait on ventilators

ApolloBVM (Rice)

Rice University students designed a bag valve mask device that will provide comfort to Covid19 patients as they wait for a ventilator to become available.

Students named the device, ApolloBVM, and those interested in designing the mask can access the device’s website on how-to-instructions.

In March of 2019, a group of Rice University senior students designed ApolloBVM, and brought the device up to medical grade through the help of Rice engineers and Texas Medical Center doctors. The device was part of a project and works by squeezing a common bag valve mask nonstop and costs less than $300 in parts.

A year later, the project is gaining a worldwide attention amid the Covid19 outbreak that created a global shortage in ventilators.

“This is going to make a difference in hospitals that run out of ventilators,” said Dr. Rohith Malya, adviser to the Rice engineering team.

“Those that have relationships with a production facility that can quickly produce them should seek FDA emergency use authorization. We’re working locally to get that done,” Rice University wrote in a press release.

ApolloBVM has generated interest from clinicians, engineers, manufacturers and do-it-yourselfers. The interest is spreading across the globe, with more than 50 countries have now requested information about the project through the ApolloBVM website.

The device won’t be used to substitute the work of a ventilator but will help less critically ill patients find some relief as they wait for a ventilator.

To access instructions on how to design the device, visit: http://oedk.rice.edu/apollobvm