Kenyatta University fourth year Biotechnology student Simon Ndirangu has come up with an innovation that uses 3D printers to produce and develop improved nasal swabs.
The process allows for production of up to 3,000 swabs a day and greatly enhances the testing capacity in Kenya that has been hampered by low availability of testing kits.
Ndirangu says his swabs are engineered to be flexible, raising comfort for patients and children when collecting samples for testing for Covid-19.
“There are currently only two major producers of swabs in the world and none in Africa. I intend to start producing 1,000 swabs per printer per day at Kenyatta University upcoming production park. The swabs are very affordable,” Says Mr. Ndirangu.
Mr. Ndirangu reveals his designed swabs feature a molded breakpoint that allows health personnel to safely and easily break off the swabs stock with several breakpoint options available for different tubes.
He says: " The swabs are made using ABS material (Acrylonitrile butadiene styrene) which is a common thermoplastic polymer used in food packaging, toys, home appliances. They will cost on average Ksh100 a piece."
Swabs are being used worldwide to collect samples from the public for testing at laboratories to confirm the spread of the coronavirus.