Ventilator project gets Newcrest help

A VENTILATOR prototype developed by Australian company Olitek and in the final stages of performance and validation testing has received a $200,000 fillip from Newcrest Mining.
Ventilator project gets Newcrest help Ventilator project gets Newcrest help Ventilator project gets Newcrest help Ventilator project gets Newcrest help Ventilator project gets Newcrest help

An OzVader ventilator prototype.

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Brisbane-based Olitek is seeking an Australian Therapeutic Goods Administration exemption to manufacture and supply the OzVader ventilator, which could be used to treat coronavirus patients.

OzVader is a collaborative partnership between Olitek and intensive care specialists from the Prince Charles Hospital in Brisbane; the Austin Hospital and Epworth Hospitals in Melbourne; and the Medical Engineering Research Facility at the Queensland University of Technology.

Other support partners include Elexon, Titley Scientific, the Advanced Robotics for Manufacturing Hub, and Narm Rubber.  

The Newcrest funding will be used to procure long lead items needed to bring the low-cost ventilator into production faster once the TGA exemption is granted.

Newcrest managing director and CEO Sandeep Biswas said securing competitively priced and effective medical equipment to treat severe respiratory issues caused by COVID-19 was a major challenge around the world. 

"This is a great example of Australian innovation," he said.

"Newcrest is excited to support this effort which brings together the skills, capabilities and resources of a range of partners to meet a global need that can make a real difference."

Olitek managing director James Oliver said the collaboration between Australian engineers, medical teams and Newcrest had the power to make a real difference in the global fight against COVID-19.

"This project represents an exciting new direction for us as an Australian manufacturer," he said.

"Coming up with solutions to complex problems is in our DNA at Olitek, and we are excited about the opportunity to have this equipment delivered to where it is most needed."

This OzVader funding is part of Newcrest's ongoing support for communities impacted by COVID-19 as announced in its A$20 million Community Support Fund.

The fund supports a variety of initiatives already underway including the contribution towards the development of COVID-19 vaccine.