In the relentless pursuit of innovation, a team of South Korean students from Hongik University in Seoul has introduced a groundbreaking solution to enhance the administration of IV fluids in disaster-stricken areas. Inspired by the challenges faced during the Turkish-Syrian earthquakes in February 2023, where 55,000 casualties and 100,000 injuries occurred, the team witnessed the struggle of medics transporting IV fluids to victims amid the chaos.

Addressing this critical issue, the team conceptualized the ‘Golden Capsule,’ a revolutionary device designed to streamline and simplify the IV fluid delivery system. Traditionally, IV fluids rely on both power and gravity for proper functionality, requiring precise positioning of the IV bag to facilitate the fluid’s journey into the body. The team tackled these challenges, creating an innovative, non-powered, and hands-free solution that operates independently of gravity and electricity.

Healthline notes the importance of maintaining the correct position for IV bags to regulate fluid flow properly. The ‘Golden Capsule’ eliminates the need for constant manual adjustments and electrical support. The device utilizes elastic forces and air pressure differences, allowing easy transport of IV fluids to individuals in disaster scenarios without the need for continuous manual assistance or electricity to adjust infusion rates.

Before bringing their idea to life, the team consulted numerous medical experts who validated the challenges associated with carrying IV fluid apparatus during disasters. Encouraged by the positive response, the team, as revealed in their interview with the James Dyson Award, diligently worked on developing a practical and impactful solution.

Sir James Dyson, Founder and Chief Engineer at Dyson, acknowledged the team’s achievement, stating, “The team has identified the limitations of existing IV injection methods, which rely on gravity and electricity, in disaster zones. Their Golden Capsule offers a much more practical, hands-free solution using a pressurized bladder, which can be positioned anywhere, such as strapped to the patient’s side.”

Personal experiences fueled the commitment of certain team members, who had faced challenges with existing IV apparatus. One team member described the inconvenience and irritability caused by the limitations of the present IV setup during hospitalization.

The team’s primary goal now is to enhance the prototype further through collaboration with medical experts, ensuring its functionality in diverse situations. With successful improvements, they aim to commence mass production of the ‘Golden Capsule’ to make a significant impact on disaster healthcare.

In recognition of their innovation, the team was honored with the prestigious 2023 James Dyson Award, a testament to their dedication to bringing forth designs that address critical challenges facing humanity.

By Impact Lab