Newcrest has joined the effort to boost Australian manufacturing and tackle COVID-19, by contributing A$200,000 to the production of a new low-cost Australian-made ventilator.
The Oz Vader ventilator prototype, which has been developed by Australian company Olitek,is in the final stages of performance and validation testing. Olitek is seeking Australias Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) exemption to manufacture and supply the ventilator.
Newcrests financial contribution to OzVader will be used to procure long lead items needed to bring the unique, low-cost ventilator into production faster once the TGA exemption has been granted.
Newcrest CEO and Managing Director Sandeep Biswas said that 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. 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. Mr Biswas said.
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. 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, Mr Oliver said.
OzVaderis a collaborative partnership between Brisbane manufacturing company 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 (MERF) at the Queensland University of Technology (QUT). Other support partners include Elexon, Titley Scientific, the Advanced Robotics for Manufacturing (ARM) Hub and Narm Rubber.
This initiative is part of Newcrests 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.
For more information on the Newcrest Community Support Fund visit www.newcrest.com/covid-19