As Ontario continues to fight the novel coronavirus pandemic, a Newmarket, Ont., high school teacher has created a homemade ventilator that he made partly using materials he found around the house.

“There were several open-sourced ventilator projects going on around the world, where there are universities or consortiums of scientists trying to develop ventilators quickly to provide for the supply,” Gordon Payne, a computer science subject head and teacher at a Newmarket high school, told Global News.

“I just thought that this would be a nice opportunity for me to just see what kind of a product I could produce with the skills I had and with the materials I had.”

A ventilator is a device used to help people breathe by delivering oxygen to the lungs.

Some people who have severe cases of COVID-19, the disease caused by the novel coronavirus, need to be supported by ventilators. This is because the virus causes a respiratory infection that can make it difficult for people with COVID-19 to breathe.

Payne said he wanted to put an intellectual product — or proof of concept — out into the world so that people can be inspired by the idea and build something they need in the environment that they’re in, rather than rely on a manufacturer to produce something that’s shipped to them.

“It took about nine days of pretty full-time work to get that done,” Payne said of the homemade ventilator.

— With files from Global News’ Laura Hensley

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