The Department of Trade, Industry and Competition (DTIC) today (10 June 2020) issued a Request for Information (RFI) which seeks to identify role players to assist the South African Radio Astronomy Observatory (SARAO), which has been mandated by the DTIC to manage the process in the National Ventilator Project.
The RFI follows on an earlier Call for Proposals for the Continuous Positive Airway Pressure (CPAP) ventilators, which was published in April and is already at an advanced stage.
The objective of the Call for Proposals for the CPAP ventilators (referred to as STREAM 1) was to meet the anticipated demand for simple, low-cost ventilators that can be rapidly produced, certified and deployed in large numbers, in order to treat the majority of hospitalised COVID-19 patients. STREAM 1 is at an advanced stage of development and this RFI is designed to be complementary to that process.
This RFI will not affect the development of STREAM 1.
The objective of the RFI (referred to as STREAM 2) is to establish a support or incubation programme to meet the anticipated ventilator demand for the treatment of a smaller number of critically ill patients. The DTIC therefore invites submissions to be made to SARAO relating to the design, development, certification and production of ventilators and supporting equipment, as well as related services, in South Africa.
The primary goal of this RFI is to collect information for two types of ventilator design that are more advanced than the ventilators produced in STREAM 1, namely:
Bi-level Positive Airway Pressure (BPAP) non-invasive Ventilator System, and
Invasive Ventilator System (IVS).
Due to the more advanced nature of these devices and the likely inclusion of electronic control, it is expected that certification will be more challenging than for STREAM 1 devices.
This RFI will not lead to procurement by the National Ventilator Project or the DTIC.
The responses to RFI will be used for the establishment of a support or incubation programme (as appropriate for the selected submissions) in order to provide, among other things:
Mutual introductions of Respondents with complementary submissions regarding products, components or services, in order to arrive at complete and certified products.
Establishment of forums to exchange relevant information between Respondents and other interested parties.
Introduction of Respondents to expert consultants and user representatives, such as clinicians and clinical technicians.
Introduction of Respondents to certification agencies and facilitation of certification in a collective forum with such agencies to the extent possible.
Introduction of Respondents to funding agencies and/or instruments, where possible, including the Solidarity Fund.
Introduction of Respondents to public and private sector product users and buyers.
Technical and engineering support, as well as review support.
View the RFI documents here.