FDA updates guidance on using ventilator splitters

The Food and Drug Administration today issued updated guidance on using ventilator splitters to support more than one patient when other options are unavailable.

FDA recommends health care providers limit ventilation sharing to two patients and 48 hours duration; try to match patients based on similar ventilatory requirements; reserve at least one single-patient ventilator for emergencies; and consider updated ventilator sharing protocols to minimize risk.

FDA last March authorized emergency use of certain ventilators and ventilator accessories for treating patients during the COVID-19 pandemic to address observed and anticipated shortages of ventilators and ventilator accessories.