The global health emergency caused by SARS-CoV-2 has revealed the urgency of equipment, devices and specific resources to contain the contagion.
A particularly sensitive issue is that of the medical transport of infectious patients which can put at risk the operators and the medical staff’s safety directly and the population’s indirectly.
Thus far, medical operators have made every effort to adopt strict safety measures during the transport of contagious patients. The use of biocontainment modules may increase the quality standard, by further reducing the operators’ risk and stress and thus also calming the patient during treatment. Which solutions are available on the market?
The biocontainment stretchers
Currently, the common systems are combined with the main stretcher and are divided into rigid and soft. While having the advantage of flexibility of use in a variety of situations, these high-safety devices have the main drawback of not being suitable for all the types of stretcher. The usable space of biocontainment plastic shells is often limited and the patient is bound to a lying position. Furthermore, their long and cumbersome procedures expose the operators to a higher risk of contagion while moving the patient.
What is and how does the ambulance biocontainment system Billy-CAB work?
The current long-lasting situation needs advanced solutions also in ambulance transport, aimed at facilitating the operators’ work, allowing a reassuring approach towards the patient and ensuring the highest safety standards. Producing medical transport advanced systems since more than thirty-four years, Stem Technology has set itself this goal.
After studying the devices currently on the market and analysing their features and limits, Stem conceived a unique solution of its kind: Billy-CAB – a cutting-edge biocontainment system for ambulance transport. Billy-CAB is made of a rigid structure in highly-resistant plastic material and it is fastened directly to the stretcher-support, without having to provide for any modification to the stretcher fastening system and safety belts.
Billy-CAB can be used with all types of stretcher, thus allowing the operators to keep unchanged the loading and unloading procedures. Compared to other biocontainment devices, Billy-CAB is firmly fastened in the vehicle; therefore, after coming in contact with potentially infected spaces, the stretcher is immediately isolated inside the medical compartment.
In addition, the transparent shell allows for a continuous eye contact with the patient, reducing the risk of anxiety and its negative impact on the clinical conditions of the patient. The eight portholes on the sides ensure access to the chamber through single-patient gloves and to connect medical devices and to collect infected wastes.
Billy-CAB technical features
At a technical level, Billy-CAB has a negative pressure chamber, constantly monitored and regulated by a differential pressure sensor and maintained by a ventilation system powered by a slot of two redundant and interchangeable batteries ensuring operation for more than twelve hours.
During transport, the air re-introduced in the ambulance is purified by a HEPA filter with 99,995% filtration, ensuring the operators’ maximum protection from infectious agents.
There is also a constant temperature monitoring in order to maintain an ideal micro-climate for the patient.
Thanks to its shell shape, a distinctive feature of the biocontainment system Billy-CAB is the possibility to load and carry the patient in a semi-sitting position, facilitating the patient’s respiratory activity, that is often compromised by the SARS-CoV-2 infection.
Since the beginning, Stem Technology pays attention to regulations and this can be found in the Billy-CAB device that can be 10g certified in accordance with the European regulation EN1789.
Projects like Billy-CAB are a fundamental contribution for the prevention and the management of a global health threat, like the COVID-19 pandemic, and also a precious resource in any pathological scenario with airborne transmission diseases, like tuberculosis and meningitis.
For more information: https://www.stem.it/en/products/billy-cab/