Surgeons have invented a new device to make it safer to diagnose some cancers during the coronavirus pandemic.
Most nose and throat investigations have been cancelled due to increased risks of medics contracting COVID-19 via patients' coughs and sneezes.
Two consultants have developed a device that clips over patients' masks and protects front-line workers. The West Midlands-based doctors want to raise £50,000 they say is enough to make devices for use across the NHS.
Chris Coulson, a consultant ear, nose and throat surgeon at University Hospitals Birmingham NHS Foundation Trust, said procedures involving an endoscope to examine the nose or throat were known to put clinicians at a significantly increased risk of contracting coronavirus.
"When clinicians carry out a nasendoscopy it can make patients cough, sneeze, and splutter - which risks spreading the virus to doctors, nurses and therapists," he said.
His company endoscope-i Ltd, co-founded with Ajith George, a consultant head and neck surgeon at University Hospitals North Midlands, has now developed the SNAP. It clicks on to a conventional surgical mask, creating a hole through which the clinician can pass an endoscope directly into a patient's nose. A valve means, despite there being a hole, any coughs, sneezes or splutters are caught within the mask.
Mr George said: "If we can raise the money needed to produce the devices, we can keep looking after patients and ensure that diagnosis and treatment is not delayed."
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Source: BBC News, 11 May 2020