Local manufacture of ventilators set to save lives throughout Africa

September 2020 News

Local production of bridge ventilators for the Africa Medical Supplies Platform (AMSP) is in full swing at ESG Medical Equipment’s manufacturing facility in Johannesburg.

“In response to the urgent need throughout the African continent for personal protection equipment during the COVID-19 crisis, ESG Medical Equipment, in partnership with other local companies, is set to help AMSP save lives through the manufacture and procurement of specialist medical equipment,” says Gavin Pelser, CEO, Engineering Solutions Group (ESG), part of Invicta Holdings. “African and global philanthropists have teamed up with local businesses to help secure urgently needed ventilators, breathing support devices and other medical equipment that will assist the people of Africa in the fight against coronavirus.

“The ESG Medical Equipment team is working closely with engineers from Virgin Orbit and Virgin Galactic, to produce high quality bridge ventilators, using locally-sourced materials and components. The design of these ventilators was provided by Virgin Orbit at no cost as part of the Virgin Group’s philanthropic efforts to help flatten the curve in Africa.

“These ventilators, along with other medical equipment and PPE, are available from the African Union’s (AU) online pool procurement platform, AMSP. This initiative was established to enable easy procurement, coordination and distribution of medical supplies for all AU member nations.

“This venture is a perfect example of how effective teamwork can be. And in this case, when over 1,2-billion lives in Africa are vulnerable, a co-ordinated effort to combat the pandemic is even more critical. Our team is proud to be part of this programme and to work with the finest business leaders and world-class engineers.”

According to South African President and AU chairperson, Cyril Ramaphosa, who officiated at the launch of AMSP in June, the online platform is “the glue that will bind the continent together.”

ESG Medical Equipment will soon produce oxygen helmets, also based on the free design from Virgin Orbit. These are critical to help open up the alveoli in infected lungs and delay or prevent Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome in those suffering the effects of COVID-19.

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