We talked to Rotem Arad, founder of MicroBVM, about portable BVM safety products, and this is what he said about it.
First of all, how are you and your family doing in these COVID-19 times?
Rotem Arad: Thank you for asking. We are well.
Tell us about you, your career, and how you founded MicroBVM.
Rotem Arad: In the 1990s, I was a medic in the Israeli army. Two of my closest friends, Dovie Maisel and Akiva Polack were also military paramedics, and they later became civilian paramedics. A piece of equipment that all paramedics need to carry is called a ‘Bag Valve Mask’ or BVM. The BVM is used for ventilating patients. When Israel experienced suicide bombings with mass casualties and paramedics needed to use several BVMs, we thought of a way to improve the product so that it would take up less space. This way, the paramedic could more easily carry the BVM in his/her kit and also, if necessary, transfer it to another paramedic during an emergency. This is how the concept for the Pocket BVM emerged. A few years later, we founded a company called Micro BVM and started developing the Pocket BVM. Today we offer a few different types of Pocket BVMs, and we also developed a product called the Extension Tube, which is another innovation in emergency medicine.
How does MicroBVM innovate?
Rotem Arad: For many emergency medical service (EMS) practitioners, space is a very important parameter. What they can carry in their emergency bag is the equipment they have to save lives. The Pocket BVM is 75% more compact than a standard BVM and therefore saves a lot of space in the kit. This enables paramedics to carry additional life-saving equipment. The product is also made from high-quality materials, which ensure high performance.
How the coronavirus pandemic affects your business, and how are you coping?
Rotem Arad: The pandemic did not negatively affect our business. In fact, we partnered with a company that created a device that automated the BVM and transformed it into a low-cost respiratory device. Also, COVID 19 increased the danger of directly touching/resuscitating patients, so many paramedics/organizations purchased the Pocket BVM to keep themselves protected from Covid 19.
Did you have to make difficult choices, and what are the lessons learned?
Rotem Arad: At the peak of the first COVID 19 wave, we experienced a very high demand for the Pocket BVM, and we had to split our inventory and production between our different partners.
Who are your competitors? And how do you plan to stay in the game?
Rotem Arad: We don’t have any direct competition. There are many companies that create Bag Valve Masks, but none have the space-saving capabilities that we have. Many militaries and civilian EMS bodies around the world have chosen the Pocket BVM as their BVM of choice. We plan to stay in the game by growing awareness among individual users through different social media outlets and by developing new and innovative products that will drive the industry forward.
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