Somnetics International announced today that it plans to repurpose its inventory of Transcend CPAP machines for use during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Minneapolis-based CPAP (continuous positive airway pressure machines used for sleep apnea) manufacturer seeks to help during a shortage of invasive ventilators by offering the repurposed CPAP machines as non-invasive ventilators. The company’s engineers are currently developing a solution that includes a new breathing circuit to control aerosolization of virus particles to protect healthcare workers, according to a news release.
Last month, the FDA issued guidance on March 22 that included CPAP/BPAP machines as possible alternatives to ventilators while addressing the shortage of devices. Last week, AdvaMed touted clinical evidence that it says reveals the benefits of non-invasive ventilators for use in less severe cases of COVID-19-related respiratory issues.
Somnetics said in a news release that it is working within FDA emergency use authorization (EUA) guidelines to produce as many machines as possible before a large increase in coronavirus cases occurs in the U.S.
“We know we have a part to play in fighting this pandemic,” Somnetics CEO Clarence Johnson said in the release. “We are working as fast as possible to boost production and convert our CPAP machines to help prevent a nationwide shortage of ventilators in healthcare settings.
“We are working quickly to provide another tool doctors can use in this fight to help patients breathe. If our company can manufacture devices that can help reduce the strain on the critical ventilator supply, we will certainly do all we can to help.”