Supply company makes collapsible intubation box for Michigan hospitals

Published: Apr. 6, 2020 at 3:41 PM EDT
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A supply company in Kalamazoo is producing an intubation box that will shield healthcare providers from COVID-19 patients.

Schupan Aluminum and Plastic Sales in Kalamazoo created the intubation box along with mechanical engineer Andy Bornhorst to help Michigan hospitals.

Currently, some COVID-19 patients have to be put on a ventilator. In order to do that, healthcare providers must insert an intubation tube into the airway of the patient.

Since the virus can be spread through water droplets, it's imperative healthcare providers take precautionary steps to reduce their risk of contracting the disease.

An intubation box is the latest item that can prevent the virus from spreading to healthcare providers.

The box is made out of a material similar to Plexiglas and will lay over the patient's face and head.

It's 22 inches high, 24 inches wide, and 18 inches deep.

It will include two armholes, so medical professionals can still have access to touch the patient.

There is also an opening on the side of the box that will allow an intubation tube inside the box.

The design comes from a Taiwanese man, but his box was glued together.

Mechanical engineer Bornhorst made modifications to the original box to make it collapsible.

John Barry, President of Shcupan Aluminum and Plastics Sales said the collapsing feature is what will help the medical professionals tremendously.

He said, "You can break it down. You can ship it very easily. It provides for much better storage at the hospital and you can ultimately take it apart piece by piece, and it provides for better sanitation."

Barry said they can make about three to four thousand of the boxes in a day.

Right now there are about three prototypes of the intubation box at Bronson Methodist Hospital in Kalamazoo.

Shcupan Aluminum and Plastics Sales sent a patent out Friday and are still waiting on approval.

They are hoping to bring it to hospitals across the country and also to those in Mid-Michigan.

In addition to the intubation box, Schupan & Sons, Inc. is also making face shields for healthcare providers.

As of Monday, they have been roughly three thousand to five thousand face shields.

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