Mumbai, April 15, 2020: PGIM India Mutual Fund today announced that as its contribution to the fight against the Coronavirus, it is providing financial support to, Project Breath of Hope, a unique collaborative effort led by the Government of Kerala to design and produce fully indigenous mechanical ventilators at the cost of just Rs. 15,000 per piece. The project has successfully created a prototype already and is preparing to get into rapid production now. PGIM India Mutual Fund has provided a financial support of over 10% of the overall cost towards this path breaking project to help accelerate the process of production in the first phase. Its assistance of Rs. 20 Lakh at this stage, comprises employee contribution and a matching company grant.
Mr. Ajit Menon, CEO of PGIM India said, “India needs to ramp up its healthcare capacities and sufficient availability of ventilators will be a critical last line of defense and a lifesaving need in the fight against COVID-19. This Kerala Startup Mission’s initiative to produce low-cost indigenous ventilators interested us for its potential to not only augment the supply of ventilators in our country but also the collaborative, open source way it is being done. We hope our humble support to this critical, best-practice initiative will not only fill a current need but accelerate India’s journey to healthcare preparedness.”
Project Breath of Hope is a collaborative effort of Kerala Startup Mission – Government of Kerala’s Nodal Agency for Innovation and Entrepreneurship – the State Health Department, various startup companies and the Super Fab Labs set up in the state in partnership with the famed Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
The objective of the Project is to design, develop and manufacture 5000 indigenous Mechanical Ventilators in the next couple of weeks and deploy them in designated hospitals in rural areas. The project utilized the Fab Labs and the hardware startup ecosystem in the state to invent and design the prototype and has selected a company to produce the ventilators. The Project will also offer the design solution to other interested manufacturers in an open-source ecosystem so that this low-cost and indigenous product can be manufactured locally in sufficient quantities in the future.