Hospital Ventilators may shut down; NHS warns

The hospitals nowadays have been warned that hundreds of ventilators used to keep sedated patients alive are at risk of suddenly shutting down because of a fault, and sometimes comes without warning.

The Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency says that there were approximately 303 Philips Respironics V60 ventilators used in the UK; they have also warned the hospitals over a delay in replacing the parts in the UK to fix the problem.

A safety alert to hospitals has been circulated so that they will be aware of the increased risk.

The regulator says that it has received one report of a ventilator that had suddenly shut down and said that there was no report of any injury to patients.

The supply of ventilators for the NHS has been a central critical area for the health service. The pandemic is happening when hospitals run out of standard ventilators used in intensive care to breathe for unconscious patients.

Some patients were being ventilated across the country using anesthetic ventilators that were designed for short-term use in the surgery.

The Department of Health and Social Care has arranged for supplying hospitals and replacement ventilators.

Safety alerts say that the fault with Philips ventilators have first emerged in March when Philips health systems have issued a warning that the fault can cause a sudden shutdown.

The company is saying that the ventilators can issue a warning that they were about to shut down. Still, in other cases, the device can stop working without warning, it means that patients would not be ventilated and may suffer brain damage or death, it depends on how long they can endure before the hospital staff has realized.

The MHRA, who regulates medical devices, said, “The MHRA first became aware of this issue in March 2020 when Philips Respironics circulated a field safety notice concerning this problem to their affected customers, a copy of which is available on

“There are 303 affected devices in the UK. There has been one report of this type of failure in the UK. There have been no reports of patient injury in the UK reported to the MHRA to date.

“All hospitals should have back-up ventilators. However, the Department of Health and Social Care has made arrangements to supply replacement ventilators to any hospitals that feel they need them, to ensure capacity is maintained in the event of local Covid-19 outbreaks or other emergencies.”

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