As announced today by Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Federal Minister of Innovation, Science and Industry Navdeep Bains Thornhill Medical, a leading innovator in medical technologies, has agreed to produce and deliver 500 mobile compact ventilator systems as part of Canada’s response to fight COVID-19.
Today’s announcement comes on the heels of an agreement signed with the Government of Ontario and Thornhill Medical to produce and supply several of its compact, portable ICU units for use across the province. Thornhill Medical’s MOVES® SLC™ is already in use around the world and is produced at the company’s own manufacturing facility in Toronto.
Following the recent signing of a letter of intent by the Government of Canada, Thornhill Medical moved immediately to scale up its production plans and expand its manufacturing partnerships and supply chain in anticipation of today’s official initial order.
The Toronto-based company, founded in 2004 as a spin-off of Toronto’s University Health Network, expects to have the its groundbreaking, proprietary MOVES® SLC™ portable life support and ventilator units available for use to support hospitals and health care facilities across the country by early April.
“We are honoured to provide our Canadian-made ventilator system to support Canadians and our healthcare system in its efforts to fight COVID-19,” said Thornhill Medical CEO Lesley Gouldie. “We are also grateful to our existing and new partners that are joining us in scaling up our portable ICU technology which will provide increased life-saving capacity in these unprecedented circumstances.”
The company has partnered with global advanced manufacturing company Linamar which has its headquarters based in Guelph, Ontario, to enable increased production capacity. Thornhill Medical received numerous offers of support from manufacturers within Canada and abroad as well as from individual Canadians, students and companies wanting to contribute with Thornhill Medical in the fight against COVID-19.
Thornhill Medical’s MOVES® SLC™ unit
MOVES® SLC™ is a compact portable, self-contained device that provides all of the crucial functions available in a modern intensive care unit (ICU). MOVES® SLC™ integrates the functions of a ventilator that generates its own oxygen from the air, a full suite of critical care monitors, and suction—all able to run on battery power. This portable ICU provides much needed life-saving capacity, essentially enabling health care providers to maintain uninterrupted ICU-level care anywhere in the hospital, and to continue with the same level of care during transport within the hospital and between hospitals. MOVES® SLC™ also addresses the challenge of providing the large volumes of oxygen required in COVID-19 treatment even if oxygen supply becomes in short supply. Thornhill Medical has been perfecting this device for 15 years and is already in market around the world.
“I am immensely proud that in the current crisis, Thornhill Medical can step up and offer the world’s most advanced life support system, designed and manufactured in Canada, to Canadians and everyone else around the world,” explained co-founder and innovator Dr. Joe Fisher, a world-renowned research scientist who is also Professor of Medicine at the University of Toronto and a staff Anesthesiologist at the University Health Network.