x
Breaking News
More () »

13 WTHR Indianapolis | Indianapolis Local News & Weather

Indy's Orchard School helps in fight against COVID-19

An Indianapolis school is making an impact in the fight against COVID-19 by helping to design something that a instructor hopes will never have to be used.

INDIANAPOLIS (WTHR) — An Indianapolis school is making an impact in the fight against COVID-19 by helping to design something that an instructor hopes will never have to be used.

IU Health posed a question to all the techies on the internet. The health care system asked for help coming up with a prototype that would allow one ventilator to support multiple patients, should the need for ventilators become dire.

The Orchard School, a K-8 school in Indianapolis, has a 3D printing lab and tech director Nate Surls realized they could use it to help.

He's been working with the team at IU Health to print different prototypes that could split the ventilators.

"We kind of really focused on having the materials on hand and being able to rapidly prototype things so that they could figure out how to really make the project work as intended," Surls says.

Organizers of the project said it shows the best of the internet.

"The whole basis of what we've been doing, is that it's open source," IU Health Dr. Tobin Greensweig said. "It's available to anyone on the internet. We've been distributing it through social media channels to the people who are dealing with these patients in the intensive care units."

Greensweig said splitting a ventilator is not ideal. This solution would only be used if there were a ventilator shortage here in Indiana, which, so far, has not been the case.