Synopsis: Newly developed
bio-aerosol containment unit (BCU) protects first responders from droplets
during attempts to resuscitate COVID-19 patients in the ICU.
The first-of-its-kind BCU
developed by Ng Teng Fong General Hospital (NTFGH) and Ngee Ann Polytechnic
acts as an additional protective layer for first responders who are only
wearing PPE suits. This effectively reduces the delay in offering immediate
treatment to patients due to the need to wear additional protective layers.
As Dr Tan Chee Keat, NTFGH’s Head
and Senior Consultant of Intensive Care Medicine mentioned in a previous press
conference, healthcare workers are made to wear a powered air-purifying
respirator before intubating patients. However, it takes 5-10 minutes to put on
the respirator, putting off immediate treatment to patients. The BCU then
allows first responders to perform immediate resuscitation before other members
of the team put on the respirators to follow-up with aerosol-generating
The BCU is made of transparent
acrylic that measures 50cm in length, 68cm in width and 60cm in height, acting
as a shell-like protective layer above the patients shoulders and head. Two
openings on the top of the BCU allow for access for medical procedures.