Game-changing CPR innovation adopted into clinical practice

An innovative piece of equipment named the SARUS-CPR hood has been adopted into clinical practice by NHS Tayside following its development in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. 

The hood was invented by Professor Peter Stonebridge, NHS Tayside’s Medical Director, and further developed by ENT surgeon and NHS Tayside clinical lead for the project, Rod Mountain. 

The small, lightweight SARUS hood is made from transparent fabric and creates a barrier between the patient and the individual performing resuscitation. It reduces the risk of contamination and infection from bacteria and viruses such as COVID-19. 

NHS Tayside, Scottish Health Innovations Ltd (SHIL), and performance manufacturer Keela Outdoors collaborated to design and develop the game-changing device that is set to revolutionise the resuscitation process for first responders. 

Robert Rea, Head of Innovation at Scottish Health Innovations Ltd (SHIL), said: “The SARUS-CPR hood is a real testament to home grown collaborative expertise, taking clinician-led insight from the NHS and turning it into a tangible device that has now been launched onto the market.” 

The SARUS-CPR hood – an acronym of Safer Airway Resuscitation – has been designed to allow trained CPR responders to easily fit it onto a collapsed patient as soon as they arrive on the scene. This helps to also reduce the time taken to initiate airway ventilation and makes resuscitation much safer for both patients and personnel. 

It can be used by trained personnel in a wide range of settings, including hospitals, GP surgeries and ambulances. 

Reflecting on device’s development, NHS Tayside’s Medical Director, Professor Peter Stonebridge said: “The entire spectrum of healthcare workers and caregivers has been absolutely vital to fighting the pandemic and in analysing potential solutions to the challenges of COVID-19 – there has been a lot of innovative problem-solving. 

“In this instance, thanks to the input of other experts, the kernel of an idea has been developed into the fully realised SARUS-CPR hood. I am very grateful to all the collaborators on this project whose ideas and ingenuity helped us get to this landmark moment as we adopt the SARUS-CPR hood into clinical practice here at NHS Tayside.” 

Rod Mountain, NHS Tayside clinical lead for the project said: “As an NHS worker, I am immensely proud to have been part of its development. This has been a genuine collaborative effort between NHS Tayside,SHIL, and Keela, drawing upon fantastic local engineering and garment manufacturing expertise. COVID-19 drove the innovation, prompting us to look at different approaches to PPE, but we now know its applications go well beyond the current pandemic.” 

Robert Rea, Head of Innovation at SHIL, said: “The teams at NHS Tayside and Keela have played a vital role in realising thisambition. Their clinical and manufacturing expertise combined with SHIL’s intellectual property and commercialisation expertise has accelerated the hood’s adoption.” 

The SARUS-CPR hood is an example of Scottish Health Innovations Ltd (SHIL) working collaboratively to create an innovative, commercial product which provides a simple solution to globally relevant disease transmission risks faced by CPR personnel. 

Keela Managing Director, Ruwan Fernando, said: “After creating surgical gowns for the NHS, we were delighted to be approached by NHS Tayside to be part of the SARUS-CPR hood project. Our team of designers worked in collaboration with the NHS to design, prototype, and engineer the Safer Airway Resuscitation Hood. 

“The device itself is made up of existing CPR airway components encapsulated within a protective barrier hood allowing for efficient adoption in a clinical setting. With the support, guidance, and funding of SHIL, we are delighted to be able to reveal and launch the SARUS-CPR hood.” 

As part of the development process, the SARUS-CPR hood has undergone extensive trials. The Scottish Health Technologies Group (SHTG), a national health technology assessment (HTA) agency, reported positively on the SARUS-CPR hood. 

SHTG provides advice to NHS Scotland on the use of new and existing health technologies that are likely to have significant implications for people’s care. SHTG’s SARUS findings – in the form of an Innovative Medical Technology Overview (IMTO) – have allowed NHS Tayside to formally adopt the hood into clinical practice. 

Among key findings, it was found that the technical tasks of performing CPR using a mannequin were conducted “equally well with the hood employed when compared with the use of standard CPR equipment.” 

After its initial launch by NHS Tayside, it is expected the SARUS-CPR hood will be available for wider use later this year.


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