Mad Systems fabricates masks and prototype ventilator to help with coronavirus outbreak

Mad Systems

Mad Systems, the award-winning audiovisual and interactive system designer and integrator, is stepping up to help health workers as they tackle coronavirus (COVID-19).

Mad Systems is pleased to announce that its founder, Maris Ensing, and owner Tricia Rodriguez are working to make masks for keyworkers on the front line of the fight against the coronavirus outbreak. The couple are using their time at home to help health workers stay protected while treating patients.

Ensing is also working on a prototype ventilator, intended for use with patients who are in ‘sub-critical’ care.

Creating masks

“Every night, we have a production line” to make facemasks for local hospitals and health care providers and for Mad Systems staff,” says Ensing. Rodriguez, who has made over 60 masks to date, is constructing them out of material and metal wires, while Ensing has been cutting patterns.

The home-made masks are not N95-certified but can be fitted with N95 filters if needed and they provide a longer-lasting alternative to disposable masks. The first batch has already been sent out to a hospital in Bakersfield, California.

“It’s a drop in the ocean, but if everyone adds a drop into the ocean, it’s amazing what kind of a flow you can generate,” says Ensing. “Keeping our health care workers healthy is extremely important. We can help health care workers keep going, even if it’s only a few here and there.

“Anybody who’s met Trish knows she cares about people and cares about these kinds of things. When this came up and it became obvious we had a lack of masks everywhere in the country, that’s just her nature.”

Prototype ventilator

In addition to the masks, Ensing has also developed a prototype ventilator and is now seeking help to make it a reality.

The ventilator uses a non-invasive method to provide positive pressure, in order to get vital oxygen to patients battling coronavirus. The prototype includes a valve to stop the lungs from deflating. Ensing hopes his creation will reduce health workers’ reliance on the critical ventilators being used in ICUs.

“If we can reduce our reliance on that by creating hundreds or thousands of these, at least we can have some positive impact on our society,” he says. “You can’t just make an intubated ventilator safely as an amateur effort.”

He has already met with experts from across the US, including staff from the University of California-Irvine, who have confirmed the design is viable. He is now looking for government help to move the project forward.

Mad Systems also recently announced that its patent application for LookingGlass Concierge was granted. This is a system that uses facial recognition technology to provides location information about registered users.