BUFFALO, N.Y. (WKBW) — Respiratory specialist Shaylee Green sees how ventilators save lives every day.
And now, ventilators are needed more than ever during the coronavirus crisis.
"We usually use a ventilator to rest our patient's lungs," Green said. "They are very sick, and their lungs are compromised... and hopefully they get stronger and stronger."
Green is a Respiratory therapist at Respiratory Services of WNY, providing all sorts of medical equipment to Central and Western New York.
Owner and Respiratory Therapist Michael McCarthy said he's been trying to get as many ventilators as he can for hospitals in the area for about a month now. He has provided 157 ventilators from his storage, manufacturers, and even patients to hospitals.
"[I've] talked to other states that haven't had this happen yet like the big wave we are having," McCarthy said. "We are trying to get other ventilators from other states to hopefully get here and then return the favor to them."
McCarthy said his staff is still making house call for their patients with respiratory needs. He added he is asking patients to give back any extra ventilators they have.
"People that do have second ventilators that using them for travel to see if it is possible to get them back and utilize them for the hospitals," McCarthy said.
These machines are specific to home care, but hospitals are taking them to help their patients fight the coronavirus. These machines cost $8,500 to $10,000.
McCarthy says he knows the manufacturers are making more but doesn't have a timeline of when they will be ready because the demand is so high.