Malawi: Poly Student Makes Innovation to Ease Mobility in Hospitals

Wheelchair (file photo).
24 February 2020

In an effort to show that engineers are indeed problem solvers, a Polytechnic second year Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering (Energy) student Immanuel Magombo has developed a prototype which he calls Umbrella wheel chair bed.

This is a design which is made using metal and other raw materials to produce a structure which could be adjusted from a wheel chair to a bed and vice versa.

According to Magombo, he decided to come up with this invention when he noticed that hospital staff have challenges in transporting patients around the hospital especially those that are critically ill.

"This wheel chair bed will act as a two in one thing where by it can be used to move the patient in places where a bed could not fit. It will also have an adjustable switch which when pressed could turn it into a bed for the comfortability of the patient," Magombo said.

Currently, Magombo is looking for interested stake holders who would like to sponsor or fund this project, so that he can come up with right sizes wheelchair beds for the hospitals in Malawi.

Taking into consideration that this is just a representation of an idea, Magombo explained that in addition to this, he would like to augment a built-in umbrella for patients who would like to sit outside or move around the hospital premises.

After learning about this idea, the Polytechnic Design Studio Manager Hilary Lodzanyama explained that it is a good invention which when scaled up, could be dynamic in the country's hospitals.

He further explained that as an institution, it is working on policies which could protect the innovative ideas of students from being copied unnecessarily.

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