In August we told you about a Boise-based company that's teaming up with Idaho State University students to develop a new type of ventilator. Since then, the project has gone global.
"People say, 'You guys specialize in beer equipment and now you're making something medical,'" says Kim Reeves. "It's not the first time that's happened."
Kim Reeves and Jeff Dalton are the cofounders of Legacy US Inc.
The Boise-based businesspeople used to specialize in beer but like many entrepreneurs, they're refocusing their efforts during the pandemic.
"We're trying to get this out globally because we're trying to save lives," explains Dalton.
The piece of equipment they're trying to make a global product is the "venspirator" which combines the words "ventilator" and "respirator."
"What this can do is prevent people from needing a ventilator by treating them early," adds Reeves.
As the pair developed the new device, they needed help marketing it to a global audience. They turned to students at Idaho State University's Bengal Solutions Department.
"We take all the economic data. We do the analysis to see the amount of jobs that might be produced over a time frame, the salaries for the jobs, and just how the project itself will impact the state as a whole," Kemardo Tyrell explains. He's a graduate assistant and works at Bengal Solutions. When he transferred to ISU he didn't expect to get real-world, hands-on experience working for companies across the state. He says he's excited to gain the experiencing while working on something that could make a positive impact across the world.
When Bengal Solutions heard about the venspirator, the decision to join the team was an easy one. Dr. Dan Cravens is the director for Bengal Solutions and adds, "It was a no-brainer. This is something that is definitely a need right now; not just in Idaho but in the rest of the nation."
Since Legacy and ISU joined forces, three companies across the globe, as well as a handful of experts here in the Gem State, have recognized the need for the venspirator.
"A global medical equipment testing supplier based out of Paris, France (reached out to us) and he said our C.O. is supporting people like you. I'm going to lend you all the testing equipment you need and show you how to use it," says Dalton.
This testing will allow Legacy to prove the venspirator effectively treats those with breathing problems while avoiding lung damage often caused by traditional ventilators.
Dalton tells KPVI a patent for the device is currently under review.
To read more about how the vensipirator works, see our original article attached above.