CURA (Connected Units for Respiratory Ailments)

Amidst the COVID-19 pandemic, an international task force of designers, engineers, medical professionals, and military experts have joined forces to launch CURA, an open-source project aimed at capacity building in intensive-care units (ICU). CURA (Connected Units for Respiratory Ailments) aims to convert shipping containers into plug-in Intensive-Care Unit Pods for the COVID-19 pandemic. The units would be as fast to mount as a hospital tent, but as safe as an isolation ward, thanks to biocontainment and negative pressure. CURA aims to improve the efficiency of existing solutions in the design of field hospitals, tailoring them to the current pandemic.

CURA is an intensive-care pod for patients with respiratory infections, hosted in a 20-foot intermodal container with biocontainment. Each unit works autonomously and can be shipped anywhere. Individual pods are connected by an inflatable structure to create multiple modular configurations (from 4 beds to over 40), which can be deployed in just a few hours. Some pods can be placed in proximity to a hospital (e.g. in parking lots) to expand the ICU capacity, while others could be used to create self-standing field hospitals of varying sizes.

CURA is developed in an open source, non-for-profit framework and welcomes suggestions and improvements. More information is available on To get involved, please contact

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