SUDBURY -- A few weeks ago, Sudbury’s Tom Fortin came up with an idea with medical professionals in mind. It's called a POSIStation, which is short for positive pressure and is designed for use in overloaded  hospitals.

"We basically have this structure where this person is essentially outdoors, they are sheltered, but they're outdoors, and then the medical staff are inside the unit, in a heated unit, that's pressurized so that no air can get inside the unit from where the public is," said Fortin.  

Fortin says this positive pressure station was built in just eight days.

"It wasn't just the building of the structure, it was engineering it, figuring out the size of the fans, testing with windows, whether were going to have holes or slots and there's still some work to be done. We have a consult window so you can talk, get a prescription that sort of thing, but then we also have this window here that basically allows the doctor to do swabs."  

Doctor Dennis Reich, is a local family physician, and is also on the pandemic planning committee for Sudbury. He says this POSIStation means patients will be able to be tested more quickly for the COVID-19 virus.

"In Sudbury were looking at a seven to ten day delays, and not everybody who really wants a test can get a test, so we are talking to a couple of locations in northern Ontario because we'd like to keep as much of this in northern Ontario. In particular, one DNA lab is basically going to work with us to produce about a hundred tests a day with a two day turn around.”

Reich says POSIStations would be using an infrared camera.

"We wouldn't have to touch the patients as they walk in. It automatically takes the temperature and puts it into an electronic medical record."  

Fortin says there are two local companies ready to start manufacturing the POSIStations in volume starting Monday. He says once this pandemic is finally over, the stations can be closed and stored away until the next health crisis.