This YouTube Video And An Argentine Car Mechanic Are Going To Save Millions Of Babies

Donald McNeil of The New York Times has a great story about how, seven years ago, an Argentine car mechanic named Jorge Odón watched a YouTube video at work.

It showed how to remove a cork from a wine bottle using only a plastic shopping bag.

Here it is:

Then Odón went home and went to bed.

In the middle of the night, he woke up with an idea.

What if midwives used a similar trick to get tangled-up fetuses out of their mothers’ wombs?

Odón made a prototype of the tool he had in mind using a bag, a jar, and his daughter’s baby doll.

He showed it to an obstetrician. Then he showed it to someone from the World Health Organisation.

Now the device is in production. This is how it works:

Called the Odon Device, this gadget may save millions of lives.

McNeil says about 5.6 million newborns and 260,000 mothers die every year during or right after childbirth and that “obstructed labour, which can occur when a baby’s head is too large or an exhausted mother’s contractions stop, is a major factor.”

Here’s to Jorge Odón’s restless nights. Here’s also to Chad Hurley, Jawed Karim, and Steve Chen, who made a Website for video-sharing back in 2005.

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