The Trinity Challenge

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3D Printed, Cost-Saving 3D4MD 100% Reusable Face Shields for Pandemics

Team Leader

Dr. Julielynn Wong

Solution & Team Overview

Solution name:

3D Printed, Cost-Saving 3D4MD 100% Reusable Face Shields for Pandemics

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Short solution summary:

The 3D4MD 100% Reusable Face Shield is a cost-saving, eco-friendly, and 3D printed personal protective equipment device that is designed for extreme reusability, exceeds regulatory requirements, minimizes supply chain dependence on disposable face shields, and reduces the amount of biohazardous waste that ends up in oceans and landfills.


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In what city, town, or region is your solution team based?

Toronto, ON, Canada
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Who is the Team Lead for your solution?

Dr. Julielynn Wong is a board-certified public health, aerospace and occupational medicine physician, and CEO of 3D4MD, a social enterprise that makes regulatory-compliant, 3D printable healthcare supplies for vulnerable populations.

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Which Challenge Area does your solution most closely address?

Respond (Decrease transmission & spread), such as: Optimal preventive interventions & uptake maximization, Cutting through “infodemic” & enabling better response, Data-driven learnings for increased efficacy of interventions
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What specific problem are you solving?

Face shields should be worn with masks to maximize mucosal protection from COVID-19. Due to the global shortage of disposable face shields, many expensive commercial products and substandard DIY devices are flooding the market, and are being re-used off label. This poses a health and safety risk to frontline workers, caregivers, and over 59 million healthcare workers. When healthcare workers are at risk, all of us (that's 7.8 billion people) are at risk. A safer, lower-cost, and sustainable face shield is urgently needed today and for future pandemics.

The 3D4MD 100% Reusable Face Shield is designed to be the most cost-effective, eco-friendly, and safe product compared to existing alternatives to shift the pandemic preparedness and response paradigm towards reusable, regulatory-compliant personal protective equipment.  

The cost of a single-use face shield in the World Health Organization Emergency Global Supply Chain System (COVID-19) Catalogue is £0.47 GBP ($0.65 USD) with a minimum quantity order of 1,000 devices. The 3D4MD 100% Reusable Face Shield is designed for extreme reusability (168-1000 uses depending on the reprocessing method) which makes the device's cost per use less than £0.47 GBP, minimizes personal protective equipment stockpile volume, and radically reduces resupply costs. 

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Who does your solution serve, and what needs of theirs does it address?

Healthcare providers, frontline workers, and caregivers currently do not have access to affordable, regulatory-compliant, and reusable face shields.  They are being forced to reuse sub-standard, untested face shields made of cheap, low-grade plastic with a limited lifespan. This significantly increases their infection risk for COVID-19, exposes them to toxic chemical disinfectants, increases their anxiety, utilizes more healthcare resources, raises healthcare system costs, and increases the amount of medical waste in landfills and oceans.

The 3D4MD 100% Reusable Face Shield provides a safer, lower-cost, and sustainable solution to support the mental health and wellbeing and protect the safety of healthcare providers, frontline workers, and caregivers, especially those who are serving vulnerable populations. The entire 3D4MD 100% Reusable Face Shield can be conveniently sanitized in batches using NSF/ANSI-certified residential and commercial dishwashers commonly found in homes and workplaces.

Our team includes healthcare workers and we will be engaging stakeholders and applying human-centered design methods to make the most appropriate, user-friendly, and sustainable solution for target users. 3D4MD has partnered with Medical Makers to host virtual Make-A-Thons globally and invite healthcare providers, frontline workers, caregivers and stakeholders to better understand their needs and engage them as we develop and refine our solution.

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What is your solution’s stage of development?

Pilot: A project, initiative, venture, or organisation deploying its research, product, service, or business/policy model in at least one context or community
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More About Your Solution

Please select all the technologies currently used in your solution:

  • Artificial Intelligence / Machine Learning
  • Biotechnology / Bioengineering
  • Crowd Sourced Service / Social Networks
  • Internet of Things
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What “public good” does your solution provide?

3DM4D will monitor and report our quantitative and qualitative outcomes in a peer-reviewed, open-access publication to demonstrate that the 3D4MD 100% Reusable Face Shield is the most cost-effective, eco-friendly, and safe product compared to existing alternatives in order to shift the pandemic paradigm towards reusable and regulatory-compliant personal protective equipment. 

3D4MD is a social enterprise that uses a private sector approach to innovate humanitarian solutions to fill critical gaps that cannot otherwise be addressed by the traditional non-profit or government sectors. 3D4MD is committed to bringing quality healthcare solutions to people regardless of their nationality, race, gender, identity, religious beliefs, class or political opinions. Proceeds are used to donate 3D4MD 100% Reusable Face Shields to support vulnerable populations in need to ensure equitable access to effective and sustainable personal protective equipment.

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How will your solution create tangible impact, and for whom?

The 3D4MD 100% Reusable Face Shield will improve the lives of people affected by COVID-19 by increasing and ensuring access to life-saving, 100% reusable personal protective equipment to facilitate safe assessment, prevention, and treatment, overcome geographical barriers to care, address the needs of vulnerable populations, and increase health system capacity and efficiency to maintain essential health services and provide care unrelated to COVID-19 while managing the pandemic.

The 3D4MD 100% Reusable Face Shield can facilitate the alignment of population health with institutional and community care to ensure the coordinated application of regulatory-compliant, reusable personal protective equipment and support equitable access to care and public health services for marginalized populations worldwide. Over 3.4 billion people live in remote or rural areas where personal protective equipment is expensive and can take weeks or months to arrive. The 3D4MD 100% Reusable Face Shield is designed for community and institution healthcare providers, frontline workers, caregivers, and personal use and can be cleaned and disinfected at least 168 times or conveniently sanitized in NSF/ANSI-certified dishwashers. The 3D4MD 100% Reusable Face Shield would especially benefit healthcare providers, frontline workers, caregivers, and community members in rural communities and who are addressing the needs of vulnerable populations.

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How will you scale your impact over the next one year and the next three years?

The 3D4MD 100% Reusable Face Shield can protect community members, healthcare providers, frontline workers, and caregivers for the:

  • 5 billion people who lack access to safe, timely, and affordable surgical care
  • 3.4 billion people who live in rural areas where personal protective equipment is expensive and can take weeks or months to arrive
  • Over 1 billion people who have a disability and should maximize their  protective measures against COVID-19
  • Over 235 million people who need humanitarian assistance and who lack access to basic healthcare services and supplies

Over the next 1-3 years, 3D4MD will build strategic partnerships with corporations, foundations, universities, governments, and humanitarian agencies to fill critical gaps and advance the scale-up of the 3D4MD 100% Reusable Face Shield. 3D4MD will engage with target users and stakeholders to gain insights to best address their needs and identify factors for the successful and sustained adoption of the 3D4MD 100% Reusable Face Shield for pandemic preparedness and response. 3D4MD seeks to partner with medical drone delivery organizations, like the WeRobotics Flying Labs Network and Zipline, to use drones for the last mile delivery of 3D4MD 100% Reusable Face Shields in the most challenging places to those who need it the most.

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How are you measuring success against your impact goals?

3D4MD's quality management system and user feedback system for the 3D4MD 100% Reusable Face Shield will allow us to track the following impact indicators:

  • Number of products distributed for healthcare providers, frontline workers, caregivers and for personal use
  • Geographical distribution of products
  • Vulnerable populations served by the products 
  • User reports to identify any potential safety concerns
  • Maximum number of reprocessing cycles to evaluate product lifespan and  cost-savings for users

3D4MD has manufactured hundreds of 3D4MD 100% Reusable Face Shields and is selling these devices across Canada. The 3D4MD 100% Reusable Face Shield is currently being utilized in Canada for personal use and by doctors, dentists, medical imaging technologists, public health, pharmacy, and nursing home staff and frontline workers outside of the medical sector. There have been no user reports on potential safety issues to date. The 3D4MD 100% Reusable Face Shield clear visor plastic has been performance tested to withstand at least 1000 autoclaving and 168 chemical disinfection cycles which makes the device's per cost use less than the £0.47 GBP ($0.65 USD) cost of a World Health Organization Emergency Global Supply Chain System (COVID-19) Catalogue single-use face shield.

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In which countries do you currently operate?

  • Canada
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In which countries do you plan to deploy your solution within the next 3 years?

  • Canada
  • Nigeria
  • Uganda
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What barriers currently exist for you to accomplish your goals in the next year and the next 3 years? How do you plan to overcome these barriers?

The legal barriers are obtaining proper insurance coverage to distribute the 3D4MD 100% Reusable Face Shield in different countries. 3D4MD plans to use our sales revenue to identify and purchase the proper insurance coverage to expand our impact in new geographic markets.

There may be cultural barriers to the widespread adoption of wearing the 3D4MD 100% Reusable Face Shields with face masks. 3D4MD manufactures the 3D4MD 100% Reusable Face Shield comfort bands in different colours using skin-safe dyes that glow under a blacklight to appeal to users and socially market the recommended use of proper eye protection.

Policy barriers include meeting medical device regulatory requirements in new markets. 3D4MD is licensed by Health Canada to manufacture and distribute the 3D4MD 100% Reusable Face Shield. To export this device outside of Canada, 3D4MD will apply for a Manufacturer’s Certificate to Export Licenced Medical Devices from Canada to prove to foreign governments that this device meets Canadian regulations and can be marketed in Canada. 

Market barriers may include supplier agreements and tariffs. To address these, 3D4MD will partner with the global community of Medical Makers to coordinate locally-led manufacturing and supplier agreements for the 3D4MD 100% Reusable Face Shield in new markets.

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More About Your Team

What type of organisation is your solution team?

For-profit, including B-Corp or similar models
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List any organisations that you are formally affiliated with or working for

3D4MD partners with Medical Makers, a growing global community of innovators, patients, and healthcare providers in 15 countries who apply user-centered design and digital technologies to crowdsource and implement life-changing solutions to serve vulnerable populations in need.

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Partnership & Growth Opportunities

Why are you applying to The Trinity Challenge?

The Trinity Challenge can help 3D4MD shift the paradigm towards reusable, cost-saving, and regulatory-compliant personal protective equipment for pandemics by:

  • identifying and purchasing the proper insurance coverage to expand our impact in new geographic markets
  • addressing cultural barriers to and promoting the widespread adoption of wearing the 3D4MD 100% Reusable Face Shields with face masks in appropriate settings
  • complying with medical device regulatory requirements in new geographic markets
  • overcoming market barriers to expand the 3D4MD 100% Reusable Face Shield into new markets, including stockpiling for pandemic preparedness.
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What organisations would you like to partner with, why, and how would you like to partner with them?

The following Trinity Challenge Members can help 3D4MD shift the paradigm towards reusable, cost-saving, and regulatory-compliant personal protective equipment for pandemics:

  • Aviva + Brunswick + Discovery + DAC Beachcroft + Legal & General + Swiss Re: identifying and purchasing the proper insurance coverage to expand our impact in new geographic markets
  • Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation + Brunswick + Facebook + Google + Internews + Microsoft + The Behavioural Insights Team + Metia + Tencent + McKinsey & Company + Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation + National University Singapore: addressing cultural barriers to and promoting the widespread adoption of wearing the 3D4MD 100% Reusable Face Shields with face masks in appropriate settings
  • GSK + BD + McKinsey & Company: complying with medical device regulatory requirements in new geographic markets
  • Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation + Brunswick + GSK + McKinsey & Company + Patrick J McGovern Foundation + Optum + Bay Area Global Health Alliance + Clinton Health Access Initiative + Joep Lange Institute + Fiocruz + Reckitt Benckiser + HKU Med + London School of Economics and Political Science: overcoming market barriers to expand the 3D4MD 100% Reusable Face Shield into new markets, including stockpiling for pandemic preparedness.
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Solution Team

 
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