Coronavirus: 3D printers to build equipment for Paris hospitals

Published by Alexandre G. · Published on 3 April 2020 at 09h39
In order to answer the exponential demand from Paris hospitals in terms of medical equipment, the Assistance Publique-Hôpitaux de Paris (AP-HP) has decided to produce facemasks, protective visor or incubation tool with a 3D printer. Quickly validated by a scientific committee, the measure could provide up to 3,000 health items a week.

3D printer at the service of health professionals. While Paris hospitals are facing the greatest health crisis ever recorded in France in a century, the shortage of health equipment – yet vital to health caregivers – is already a major issue.

While waiting for millions of facemasks promised by the government and said to be delivered in a few days, Assistance Publique-Hôpitaux de Paris staff finds alternative solutions to build protective gear, intubation material and ventilator parts. It’s with 3D printers that they build large amounts to solve problems of exceptional and increasing demands.

In a press release of the Agence France Presse, the AP-HP explains their action because of the necessity to “produce in large quantities medical devices to face never-seen-before material requests in this time of epidemic.” An initiative started by a surgeon at the Hôpital Necker-Enfants Malades respecting – obviously – all instructions of a device previously approved and validated by a scientific committee. Of course, Paris hospitals board says these are just accelerated procedures but yet they are solid. The production is conducted in a small factory, set a few meters from the Hôpital Cochin on rue du Faubourg Saint-Jacques in Paris 14th arrondissement.

According to Roman Khonsari, surgeon at the Hôpital Necker, this plan could “depending on the type of equipment and complexity, produce 300 items a day to 3000 a week”. The use of 3D technology remains necessary, according to the doctor specialized in reconstructive surgery. As for financing, this collaboration is the result of a partnership between luxury group Kering and French startup Bone3D, expert in 3D printing for medical use.

A project carried out in a dozen of days with the help of fifty doctors, as well as private engineers and developers. This plan will undoubtedly have a major spot in the fight against the epidemic. All means are good to help hospitals!

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