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Safe sanitation — novel, inexpensive method to open water coolers for hand washing during PPE doffing and other activities.

Washing of hands is an important method for infection control at all times, and is especially true during the Ebola outbreak. Water coolers are used instead of running water in many Ebola treatment wards in West Africa. Proposed is a novel pneumatic valve that can be activated with a foot pedal and made from a simple blood pressure cuff.

Photo of Andy Miller
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Blood pressue cuffs have a bulb and hose, which can be connected to a simple bladder (plastic balloon) inside of a PVC pipe and placed in line of the spigot in water coolers used to wash hands in remote, resource poor locations. The bulb can be housed inside of a foot pedal, which can be mass manufactured at very low cost (three components) or fashioned locally from inexpensive materials. 

photo credit : http://lens.blogs.nytimes.com/2014/10/26/finding-visible-hope-amid-ebolas-invisible-danger/?_r=0

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Photo of Jab Thorn
Team

Some of the early videos did show the workers turning a spigot on and off several times during doffing. This seems to be a simple solution.

Photo of Deborah Parsons
Team

Andy would you want to build a prototype or direct us to a prototype that inspired this post?