By Andrew Liszewski
The Boy Scouts’ motto might be ‘Be prepared’, but something tells me they don’t have a merit badge for setting up an emergency intensive care unit should the need arise. So instead of relying on an 8 year old kid who can tie a couple of knots in the event of a medical emergency, you might want to consider throwing one of these MedEx 1000 portable intensive care units in the trunk of your car, just in case. At 40 pounds it’s about as heavy as a large piece of luggage, but manages to provide the following emergency medical services:
Physiological Monitoring (electrocardiogram, invasive pressure monitoring, non-invasive blood pressure monitoring, temperature, pulse rate, blood oxygen saturation, and heart rate); low rate and high rate infusion pumps; a fluid warmer; a ventilator with carbon dioxide and oxygen monitoring capabilities; and the ability to deliver oxygen to a patient (using an external oxygen cylinder or oxygen concentrator).
It’s mostly designed to be used in hospitals, aircraft, ambulances and extended care facilities where some source of power is readily available, but in a real emergency it can be powered by 2 hot-swappable lithium-ion batteries which can each provide about 2 hours of stand-alone functionality. The MedEx 1000 was recently approved by the FDA and the first devices are expected to be delivered sometime in early 2009.