Here, we look into the many ways in which medical and safety technology manufacturer Dräger has been stepping up to help its customers through the COVID-19 crisis
The current COVID-19 pandemic has had a significant impact on countries around the world, the UK being no exception. As a major supplier of both medical and safety equipment, Dräger products are in high demand. Open Access Government looks at Dräger’s initial response to the global pandemic, with focus on their ventilation and personal protection equipment (PPE) product ranges and how the organisation has reacted to support healthcare and industry customers through these difficult times.
Like other medical and safety companies, when the pandemic hit the UK in early 2020, Dräger experienced a sudden increase in demand. Not only for ventilators, anaesthesia machines, patient monitors and related accessories such as filters but also for much-needed PPE such as face masks and protective suits. As a company who specialises in technology for life in order to protect, support and save lives around the world, the safety of customers and employees was of the highest importance and therefore Dräger needed to act fast to help.
On the healthcare side, the provision of ventilators was only one part of the challenge. There was also the difficult task of commissioning new devices and recommissioning older devices to help with demand. Maintenance and repair of current devices and ensuring customers received comprehensive device usage training also had to be managed on a national scale.
Bringing in over 130 years of experience in healthcare and being a specialist in acute care, Dräger summoned all its resources to overcome these challenges and have also been working at full capacity to provide COVID-safe on-site installation and configuration, as well as online and offline clinical training to ensure users are equipped with the right information and are fully supported.
Lesley Youren, Marketing Manager for Hospital Segment, told us: “The pandemic has caused much uncertainty and required us to act quickly to support customers and their patients. As early as March, we were asked to respond to a national call for critical and emergency transport ventilators in the UK. As a global supplier, our production site in Lübeck was already working at maximum capacity to produce the unprecedented volume of ventilator requests from all over the world. We have delivered a large number of critical care and emergency transport ventilators into the UK market so far this year and are still working at quadruple our normal production capacity to meet this global requirement.”
To address the high demand for training, Dräger’s clinical applications team responded quickly to deliver a flexible remote national training programme, for not only their current product range but also legacy products, due to the number of older devices being put back into commission. Simon Bensley, Clinical Training and Education Specialist, commented, “We successfully provided over 130 training sessions with positive feedback from attendees. It has been a challenge; however, we have worked together to come up with a solution that not only helps clinicians but will take us forward in the future.”
As a specialist in acute care, Dräger’s global team created dedicated content on the use of its devices during a pandemic for healthcare workers, including informational videos and a variety of accessible training tools.
To protect the safety of employees, caregivers and patients, Dräger UK implemented remote working to all staff that we’re able to, whilst ensuring the highest level of safety and hygiene protocols in both office and field locations.
Lesley Youren comments, “I am proud to be part of a company who stepped up to provide first-class products and services with the commitment and dedication that we are known for. As the pandemic continues through the winter, we will continue to support our front-line workers in healthcare and are proud to do so with our guiding philosophy at heart ‘Technology for life.’”
Filtering facepieces (FFP)
The COVID-19 pandemic has also seen an unprecedented demand for Dräger’s PPE, which had led to key supply chain challenges for effective filtering facepieces (FFP). Dräger took significant steps to expand manufacturing capacity for FFP’s by building extra production facilities around the globe. Additionally, and in connection with receiving an order from the British Government to deliver FFP’s, Dräger has set up a new 43,000 ft2 mask production facility in Gateshead. The new production site in the UK will not only help to increase supply of FFP masks to healthcare but also fire brigades and industries such as food, beverage and manufacturing. For future planning, Dräger are now working closely with customers to create ‘Pandemic Preparedness’ plans to help companies with stock holdings without having to commit to a purchase, thus protecting public sector budgets that cannot afford to procure equipment in advance of when it is needed.
The company has solidified the important role it plays in ensuring its customers have the right information, from product training to increasing supply to meet the global demand the COVID-19 pandemic has caused.
Draeger Medical UK Ltd
Tel: +44 (0) 1442 213 542
Draeger Safety UK Ltd
Tel: +44 (0) 1670 352 891
Please note: This is a commercial profile