Most of us know Belkin as manufacturers of official Apple device accessories. But the company, owned by Foxconn, has announced that it is collaborating with the University of Illinois to create a gas-operated ventilator amidst the COVID-19 global epidemic.
FlexVent, as the product is called, is a gas-operated ventilator that could help to address the ongoing demand for critical respiratory equipment around the globe. Belkin says that FlexVent will function as a single-use ventilator for emergencies, with patients in respiratory distress receiving “constant-flow, pressure-cycled ventilation”.
However, the ventilator hasn’t been approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in the U.S. yet. In the meantime, Belkin is applying for a “Emergency Use Authorisation”, which basically allows for medical products to be used in emergency situations. This could help medical personnel in potential situations where a full-featured ventilator is unavailable, with expertise also provided from the University of Illinois and Carle Health (an Illinois-based healthcare system in the U.S.).
This new development comes as much of the world fights against the curb of the coronavirus; the U.S. remains one of the most-affected countries by COVID-19. According to Chet Pipkin, the CEO and founder of Belkin, the company aims to use its considerable manufacturing assets to help:
“We had to take action now where we could. With a global pandemic underway, we quickly realigned our assets to serve the healthcare community, and we were able to adapt to identify one of the most pressing needs facing the healthcare community: ventilators.”
That certainly makes sense, with Belkin’s parent company Foxconn being one of the largest technology manufacturers in the world. This follows moves by other manufacturers—including automotive companies such as Ferrari and Lamborghini—to divert their manufacturing capacities towards combating the COVID-19 pandemic.
All in all, it’s definitely a nice touch to see companies around the world band together to fight against the pandemic. One of the silver linings to the entire situation is how people from all around the world have worked together in a bid to beat COVID-19.