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Doctor develops new cheap breathing device for developing countries


Conventional ventilators cost $30,000 but this innovation ‘D-box’ introductory price is $300!

A Nigeria-trained doctor, Dayo Olakulehin, has unveilled a new portable ventilation device called D-Box.

Dr. Dayo Olakulehin,a trained medical doctor, CEO and founder of LigandCorp, presented the product at an inauguration ceremony in Lagos.

The cost, effective and power-friendly compared to existing ventilators is rechargeable, and was built to suit the dynamics in developing countries where a significant number of people have breathing challenges in emergency situations due to lack of such medical equipment.

How the D-Box ventilator works

The patent-pending D-Box is an inexpensive ventilator that electro-mechanically pumps most commonly available CPR bags and has been developed specifically for use in resource-limited nations and in disaster relief situations. At an estimated 1/100th the cost of a traditional ventilators, the D-Box is financially accessible to those underserviced markets.

The D-Box requires little expertise to operate, it’s easily deployable, and has a rechargeable battery pack for continuous operation during power outages which can occur even in large cities of developing nations, in disaster relief situations, or in any remote location.

Getting started

In 2012, during his medical internship at the Lagos University Teaching Hospital (LUTH), Dayo Olakulehin had an experience that changed the course of his life. “I found myself having to manually squeeze a CPR bag for 8-10 hours at a time to help a patient with respiratory illness breathe because there was no other alternative” Dayo recounted via inertiaengineering.

This experience drove Dayo to think of a better way, and the idea for the D-Box was born. Many other similar stories have surfaced since – of doctors, nurses and family members in areas of India and Africa having to manually squeeze CPR bags 24 hours a day for as long as an entire month to keep patients and family members alive.

The D-Box was just an idea until Dayo left Nigeria to come to Canada in August 2015. In Toronto he immersed himself within the rich entrepreneurial start-up ecosystem and found a partner who could help make his D-Box dream become reality. That partner was Ray Minato, President and CEO of Inertia Engineering + Design. “Inertia’s rigorous methodology, core values, and outstanding team with a passion for developing products that have an impact on the world made them the only choice.” said Dayo in a post on the interiaengineering website.

Dayo’s urgency to find a solution to what he had experienced inspired Inertia’s team to apply their state-of-the-art design practices to deliver this product innovation in record time – from idea to proof-of-concept prototype in just over three months. “The key to this product innovation is not so technically complex but rather that it simply meets the user’s basic and critical needs (and only those needs) where there was previously nothing.” commented Ray Minato, President & CEO of Inertia.

On January 15th, 2016 Dayo returned to Lagos, where the D-Box was introduced to the medical community at an event . The ceremony was to raise awareness and inspire government, private sector and philanthropic pre-orders and investment so that further product development and prototype testing can continue.

The joint venture is aiming to get the product into the hands of hospitals and medical centres in the next 16 months.

About Dayo Olakulehin

Dayo Olakulehin, is the CEO and founder of LigandCorp – a medical technology product solutions company, geared towards providing devices for use in health facilities in the developing nations of the world. Dayo is not only a trained medical doctor, but a thought leader, speaker,and creative writer. He has a passion for quality health care delivery with a keen interest in disease patterns in populations, health innovation, clinical research and entrepreneurship.

Dayo is also the founder of Africa’s first Medical Innovation Hub, PAMIH

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