Although the production schedule was broadly aligned with Covid infection rates informed by epidemiological and scientific input, many of the units were still to be deployed into the healthcare system at the end of the first wave towards the end of 2020.
This was due to several issues including poor coordination and internal bureaucracy preventing hospitals from requesting the devices. In other instances there were misconceptions regarding the amount of oxygen consumption or a lack of understanding on how the devices worked from a treatment therapy point of view. In many cases, poorly maintained hospital infrastructure has impacted on the availability of reticulated oxygen supply to the required points.
With the advent of the second wave in December 2020, a groundswell of calls from the frontline emerged urging for further deployment of the devices. The Gift of the Givers, a humanitarian NGO, stepped in to facilitate and execute against this additional demand, resulting in additional devices being deployed to public and private hospitals as well as to emergency services across all nine provinces.
As at March 2021, 10 790 CSIR L.I.F.E devices and 1 077 SAVE-P 100 devices have been distributed. Plans for the deployment of the remainder of the devices are in progress in response to the well established efficacy of the devices and ongoing need.
In addition to delivering the devices, the appropriate training material is also distributed and direct feedback from frontline healthcare personnel to include hospital CEOs, nurses and doctors is received and appropriately disseminated. This in turn has added to the successful deployment of the devices.