Fighting COVID-19 with Research and Innovation
A*STAR AND LOCAL SME DEPLOY AUTOMATED SYSTEM AT VACCINATION CENTRES TO HELP HEALTHCARE WORKERS
Ms Nellie Tan, Nurse Manager with Thomson Medical, preparing to use the Automated Vaccine Inoculation Dispenser (AVID) system
To reduce the manual step of filling injection syringes with vaccine, A*STAR’s Advanced Remanufacturing and Technology Centre (ARTC) and Singapore Institute of Manufacturing Technology (SIMTech) have collaborated with local systems integrator Sysmatic Global to develop an Automated Vaccine Inoculation Dispenser (AVID) system. Thomson Medical, a vaccination centre operator, also supported the development and trials of the machine.
AVID automates the extraction of vaccines from vials plus disperses bubbles inside the syringes, using a combination of robotic parts, smart sensors and digital technologies.
The system was developed within six weeks from conceptualisation. It was designed to reduce the workload of healthcare providers, increase accuracy and productivity, and enhance personal safety as well. The use of AVID allows more focused attention by healthcare providers on interacting and communicating with people receiving the vaccinations.
AVID is customised for the vaccination centres which are set up by Singapore’s Ministry of Health and operated by private healthcare providers. The system currently supports the management of vials used to contain the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine, with potential to be customised for the Moderna vaccine as well.
AVID is easy to use at just the push of some buttons, only needing simple training without any special qualifications required. The machine’s small footprint and low weight (less than 25kg) means it can be easily deployed to any vaccination centre. AVID has been deployed to at least seven vaccination centres in Singapore so far, which administer the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine.