Leading medical device development companies have been asked by the UK Government to develop and manufacture ventilators at massive speed.
Cambridge companies unite to meet the COVID-19 ventilator challenge
On 13th March, a group of leading medical device development companies from Cambridge was asked by the UK Government to assist in the rapid development and manufacture of ventilators to meet increased hospital requirements, caused by COVID-19.
Cambridge Consultants, PA Consulting, Sagentia, Team Consulting and TTP plc took up the challenge and MetLase provided industrial support. These companies represent the renowned Cambridge Cluster, Europe’s largest technology hub, with more than 1,500 companies employing tens of thousands.
The UK’s engineering community has responded to the government’s call for help. These five specialist medical device development organisations are applying a range of disciplines, including electronics, software development, mechanical engineering, human factors, design, thermodynamics and regulatory knowledge.
This initiative unites competing businesses during an unprecedented public health emergency. With hundreds of experts working night and day, and in close cooperation, the Cambridge community has come together to address this challenge.
The companies are all working to a specification published by the government, established in response to the clinical interventions understood to be effective in the treatment of COVID-19. While working on separate, parallel designs, the group is collaborating closely to support each other.
High volume supply and extremely rapid manufacture are the key objectives, while remaining subject to testing and approval through the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency - MHRA. This is a huge technical challenge. In broad terms the companies are taking a development process that would normally take 5-6 years and attempting to deliver within 5-6 weeks, and against the background of distributed teams observing government separation guidelines.
Signed by Cambridge Consultants (part of Altran), MetLase (a joint venture owned by Unipart and Rolls Royce), PA Consulting, Sagentia (a division of Science Group plc), Team Consulting (an employee owned trust), and TTP plc (an employee owned company).
For over 50 years, Cambridge Consultants has led the way in innovative product development. We are the development partner of choice to many of the world’s leading blue chips, as well as the virtual development team for ambitious start-up companies.