He once helped the rural communities in Sarawak gain access to safe drinking water via solar-powered water infiltration systems. Now, Ganesh Muren of Saora Industries is looking into helping Covid-19 patients breathe easier.

Hospitals are currently finding that there are not enough breathing aids available. Due to the shortage of automated machines, healthcare workers have to—short of manually bagging a patient—use manual ventilators for long periods of time, which hinders their ability to attend to other patients.

Ganesh Muren of Malaysian social enterprise Saora Industries saw the need to address this vital necessity and worked to come up with a solution. The result is Ethovent, which is put together by a multidisciplinary team of engineers, scientists, clinicians and designers from Saora Industries.

Modelled around the traditional breathing bag, Ethovent automates the pumping of the breathing bag to mimic hand movement. A computerised mechanism allows healthcare workers to customise age, lung capacity and other variables for every patient. Ethovent may also be connected to a supply of pure oxygen for patients in need.

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Above A video of the making of Ethovent, by Saora Industries

Its CEO Ganesh Muren, who was a Tatler Force For Good 2017 awardee, assures that they are working with the Ministry of Health, the National Institute of Health and the Medical Devices Authority so that Ethovent is certified for medical use. The best part is it is only a fraction of the cost of automatic conventional resuscitators. They aim to produce 30 units of Ethovent per day at a cost per unit varying between RM3,000 to RM5,000, depending on the level of customisations such as battery capacity and maintenance programmes.

Muren adds: “As this is a social innovation born out of a very real need during the Covid-19 pandemic, we hope to work with the government to place Ethovent units in all suburban and rural settings. What we want to achieve is an assurance that all Malaysians get the best medical treatment, regardless of status.”

Saora Industries plans to distribute this low-cost automated smart ventilator to rural hospitals where medical supplies are severely lacking, as well as every public clinic and hospital outside the Klang Valley.

Muren is making an appeal to the public to help fund this social project, which will also help provide job opportunities for the B40 and Orang Asli communities to train as Ethovent technicians. “We welcome collaborators, partners and introductions—anything that will boost our efforts. If you would like to do your part for humanity at this juncture, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with us,” he says.

If you wish to help, contact hello@ethovent.com or visit www.ethovent.com.

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