Patient Ventilator, United States, c. 1969

1969 in Santa Monica
Bennett ventilator,model PR2 with spare head

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Bennett ventilator,model PR2 with spare head
Science Museum Group Collection
© The Board of Trustees of the Science Museum

Bennett ventilator, model PR2 with spare head, made by Bennett Respiration Products Inc., 1639 Eleventh Street, Santa Monica, California, United States, 1965-1975. Used in the special care baby unit of the John Radcliffe hospital, 1970-1986.

An infant born prematurely and with low birth weight needs help with their breathing. This is because their respiratory system is not mature enough for them to breathe unaided. This ventilator can be operated automatically to allow a flow-sensitive supply of air to be delivered to a patient through a valve. This assists breathing only as necessary. It works if the patient inhales, but if they do not then the machine operates after a pre-set time interval. This unit was used in the neo-natal special care baby unit of the John Radcliffe Hospital, Oxford, England, from 1970 until 1986.

Herbert Lincoln Gage Jr patented the ventilator in the US in 1966. He assigned his patent rights to maker Bennett Respiration Products, Inc. of Santa Monica, California.


Object Number:
aluminium, steel and plastic
overall: 1730 mm x 750 mm x 750 mm,
John Radcliffe Hospital (Neo-natal Unit)