Design and technology consultancy Cambridge Design Partnership has developed a revolutionary respiratory humidifier using funding awarded by SBRI, a UK government program to drive innovation within the public sector.

The substantial funding awarded to Cambridge Design Partnership provided a great boost to the humidifier prototype development, the company explained in a statement.

The new humidifier serves a crucial purpose in the healthcare sector.

Ventilators used on intensive care units keep patients alive by delivering air for them to breathe. Humidifiers are attached to the ventilators to heat and humidify the air to body conditions. An unfortunate side effect of the humidifying process is that it causes condensation (or ‘rainout’) to accumulate in the breathing circuit.

These pools of warm water promote the colonization of microbes that increase the likelihood of contracting deadly infections. One of the most common infections is Ventilator Associated Pneumonia (VAP), which kills many thousands of people every year in the UK alone.

“It’s been fantastic to see this project gathering momentum and being able use the funding to develop such an important medical technology. This product has the potential to drastically improve the lives of patients by controlling a cause of infection for critically ill patients and improving their lives”

Keith Turner, partner in Cambridge Design Partnership

A combination of high mortality and high care costs means that an innovative solution is required; CDP set about designing the new humidifier with both excellent performance and crucially, the removal of the root cause of the condensation.

“It’s been fantastic to see this project gathering momentum and being able use the funding to develop such an important medical technology. This product has the potential to drastically improve the lives of patients by controlling a cause of infection for critically ill patients and improving their lives,” Keith Turner, partner in Cambridge Design Partnership, said in a statement.

“This innovative humidification technology has formed the foundation of an exciting new company aiming to commercialize products that reduce healthcare costs and improve patient outcomes,” added Mike Cane, founder of Cambridge Design Partnership.