Department of Urology

April 14, 2020

UW Urologist Dr. Rob Sweet Leads Covid-19 Innovative Taskforce

The COVID-19 Pandemic placed unprecedented challenges in the UW Medicine supply chain for medical and protective equipment that threatened to halt the lifesaving work of so many UW Medicine providers and healthcare workers.

In response, Dr. Tim Dellit, UW Medicine Chief Medical Officer, charged Dr. Rob Sweet from the Department of Urology, and a UW cross-campus task force, with the development of innovative partnerships and creative engineering solutions. The Innovations Task Force (comprised of experts from medical research, clinical care, emergency operations, infection control, electrical, computer science and mechanical engineering, manufacturing, research, and other disciplines) has since worked tirelessly.

They first identified current and expected needs and associated shortfalls and have since been developing, testing, and implementing innovative rapid manufacturing and engineering solutions to UW Medicine, the surrounding area, and potentially supplying COVID-19 technology assistance or products to areas as far away as New York with the UW collaboration with Cornell University.

Project Updates:

Face Shields – delivered 500 Face Shields to UW Medicine and delivering 300 to MEDIC ONE.

Gowns – in process for FDA clearing for medical use

Masks – in re-design and retest phase for various mask design (surgical, PAPR, NBR, masks with filter)

Respiratory Surgical Box – in re-design and re-test for use in the UW Medicine OR.

COVID-19 Testing Booth – in design phase to provide healthcare worker better protection

CPAP Helmet – testing phase

Anesthesia Mask Adaptor – re-design/re-test phase