UK government orders 10,000 ventilators from Dyson for coronavirus patients

James Dyson refocused resources at his company, and worked with TTP, The Technology Partnership, to design and build an entirely new ventilator, The CoVent. (Reuters)
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Updated 26 March 2020

UK government orders 10,000 ventilators from Dyson for coronavirus patients

  • James Dyson: We have received an initial order of 10,000 units from the UK Government which we will supply on an open-book basis
  • The government, in anticipation of cases peaking in Britain in coming weeks, had made an urgent appeal to manufacturers to supply the National Health Service

LONDON: The British government has ordered 10,000 medical ventilators designed at breakneck speed by vacuum cleaner-maker Dyson, billionaire founder James Dyson said in an email to staff on Wednesday, as the country tries to boost the number of ventilators available to treat coronavirus patients.
The government, in anticipation of cases peaking in Britain in coming weeks, had made an urgent appeal to manufacturers to supply the National Health Service and would also use devices from private hospitals and other sources.
“We have received an initial order of 10,000 units from the UK Government which we will supply on an open-book basis,” James Dyson said in an email to all staff seen by Reuters.
“We are also looking at ways of making it available internationally.”
Dyson said since receiving a call from British Prime Minister Boris Johnson 10 days ago, he had refocused resources at Dyson, and worked with TTP, The Technology Partnership, to design and build an entirely new ventilator, The CoVent.
It deployed its expertise in air movement, motors, power systems, manufacturing and supply chain gained from developing products like air purifiers and fans as well as cleaners to develop the ventilator from scratch.
Reuters had reported earlier that British industry expected the government to give the go-ahead for an emergency ventilator production plan on Wednesday.


Italy extends lockdown until ‘at least’ April 12

Updated 2 min 28 sec ago

Italy extends lockdown until ‘at least’ April 12

  • Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte said any easing of containment measures would be done incrementally to ensure Italy does not give up gains it has made
  • Health Minister Roberto Speranza later announced that ‘all containment measures would be extended at least until Easter’ on April 12

ROME: Italy on Monday extended an economically crippling lockdown until “at least” mid-April to stem coronavirus infections that have claimed a world-leading 11,591 lives.
Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte said any easing of containment measures would be done incrementally to ensure Italy does not give up gains it has made against the extraordinary disease.
The near three-week shutdown “had been very tough economically,” Conte told Spain’s El Pais newspaper.
“It cannot last very long,” he said. “We can study ways (of lifting restrictions). But it will have to be done gradually.”
Health Minister Roberto Speranza later announced that “all containment measures would be extended at least until Easter” on April 12.
Business closures and a ban on public gatherings were to have expired on Friday.
Italy was the first Western nation to impose sweeping restrictions to stem a pandemic that has claimed more than 36,000 lives worldwide.
Its own toll grew by 812 on Monday and the number of infections reported by the civil protection service surpassed 100,000.
But fresh evidence also suggested that COVID-19 was spreading more slowly than when the first victim died in Italy on February 21.
The daily rate of new infections dropped to 4.1 percent — a fraction of the 62 percent level registered a month ago.
The number of people suffering from the illness at its epicenter in the northern Lombardy region also dropped for the first time.
And the number of people who have recovered from COVID-19 across the nation of 60 million people hit a new high.
“We saw 1,590 people recover in the past 24 hours,” civil protection service chief Angelo Borrelli told reporters.
“This is the highest number of recoveries recorded since the start of the pandemic.”
Deputy Health Minister Pierpaolo Sileri said the latest data showed that Italy might see “a drop in the number of people infected within seven to 10 days.”
Italy’s ISS public health institute chief Silvio Brusaferro also felt the infection rate was approaching its peak.
“We are witnessing a flattening of the curve,” Brusaferro told the La Repubblica daily.
“There are no signs of a descent yet, but things are improving.”
Health officials said one of the most encouraging figures was a drop from 25,392 on Sunday to 25,006 on Monday in the number of people in Lombardy testing positive for COVID-19.
The figure had grown continuously for more than a month.
“The picture has improved a lot over the past four days,” Lombardy’s chief medical officer Giulio Gallera said.
The latest data was released nearly three weeks into a national lockdown that has emptied cities and paralyzed most business activity.
Store and restaurant closures were reinforced last week by a shutdown of “non-essential” factories.
Forecasts by several global banks and analysts point to Italian economic output shrinking by seven percent this year.