Safe technology helps saving livesFollow article
The new coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 is spreading at an unprecedented pace, exhibiting insidious properties and puzzling experts. In response, SCHURTER has ramped up the production of its medical products.
At the time of writing, the world has significantly more than 12 million confirmed cases of the life-threatening viral disease COVID-19, which attacks the respiratory tract in particular, and the trend is still unbroken. An end is not in sight, with further outbreaks feared.
Around the globe, a national state of emergency has been declared in almost every country and public life has been paralysed. The damage to national economies is running into trillions.
System relevant production facilities
Thanks to decades of expertise in manufacturing as a supplier of medical technology, SCHURTER was able to avert the lockdown of many of its production facilities. Pandemic and system-relevant plants were closed in very few countries.
SCHURTER has supported the growing requirements to fight the virus by drastically increasing its capacities in favour of the production of components and input systems for medical technology.
Western states poorly prepared
After the epidemics SARS (2002) and MERS (2012), which were also caused by corona viruses, some Asian countries appeared to be well prepared. The West, on the other hand, which had hardly been affected by both previous epidemics, was literally overrun by the new SARS-CoV-2.
It quickly became evident that the capacities of respirators would most likely not be sufficient in the event of an unchecked outbreak of the virus. Analysis systems for blood samples are also of vital importance for assessing the crisis situation. These were also not available in sufficient numbers. For many years SCHURTER has been working closely in these areas with the most important and renowned manufacturers of respiratory equipment and blood analysis devices such as Hamilton, Dräger and many others. A massive expansion of production
has been pushed ahead at full speed.
Human Machine Interface
Highly complex equipment such as ventilators can only be operated by qualified specialists. Such a ventilator can be described as a human-machine system. The communication takes place via a Human Machine Interface (HMI). The interface is therefore essential for the translation and transfer of information between the two coupled systems man and machine.
This HMI must be adapted to the skills, requirements and characteristics of the operators and the tasks to be performed:
- Intuitive operability through few, clearly recognizable input options
- Clear feedback from the interface that an input has been correctly recognized
- Information presentation in accordance with human receptivity
SCHURTER has acquired enormous know-how in the field of touchscreens for medical devices and supplies the world's most renowned manufacturers.
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Not all functions of high-tech medical devices are triggered via a touch panel. Switches are just as important.
- First-class feedback
- Absolute reliability
For this task, SCHURTER offers a broad portfolio of high-quality metal line switches in all different technologies (mechanical, piezoelectric, capacitive) and dimensions.
Safety in medical devices begins with the power supply. No electrical device in medical technology may endanger patients or staff. This requires appropriate protective measures, which must be taken as soon as the power supply is connected. Device plugs and power entry modules (PEM) with or without line filters must comply with the medical device standard IEC/UL 60601.
SCHURTER offers a wide range for this purpose. Medical power entry modules usually consist of the following components:
- IEC appliance inlet with cord retention protection
- Fuse holder accessible from outside
- Power switch
- Mains filter (optional)
The mains filter is an important safety element here. It protects the device from external RF interference and also reduces potentially disturbing emissions. PEMs are essential for trouble-free operation.
Blackouts are rare in the industrialized world. But a power cut does not always have to come from the energy suppliers. Sometimes just a small mishap is enough. In medical technology, you simply can't afford such a thing. It would be fatal if a device suddenly stopped working. SCHURTER relies on the V-Lock cord retention safety device which has proven itself in professional use.
Find out more about how SCHURTER contributes to the field of medical equipment in our Success Story.