WINNIPEG -- A ventilator designed in Winnipeg has received the go-ahead from Health Canada to be manufactured and undergo trials to help medical professionals treat COVID-19.

The Winnipeg Ventilator 2.0, created by Cerebra Health, recently received authorization from Health Canada to be produced and shipped across Canada immediately.

Dr. Madgy Younes, Cerebra’s scientific founder, created the original Winnipeg Ventilator, which was licensed and used as the basis for commercial ventilators throughout the 1990s and 2000s. The units were also used during the 2003 SARS epidemic.

"That technology was available for us, and we, with the support from the government of Canada, took that technology and did an updated version intended for this purpose of COVID, as well as potentially other uses," said Dawson Reimer, CEO of Cerebra, in an interview on Tuesday.

The ventilator would be used in intensive care units to treat patients who have been diagnosed with COVID-19 and need respiratory support, Reimer said.

The authorization from Health Canada gives them the clearance to be able to use it in Canada to care for patients, according to Reimer.

"Now that the approval is in place, we're going to move from a small handful of devices into thousands," he said.

Clinical evaluation of the ventilator will take place in Manitoba in the intensive care unit of the Health Sciences Centre.

"We need to see it work out well in a carefully controlled environment so we can identify any last issues so we can get the kind of data that is needed to be able to substantiate and roll it out potentially in a broad deployment across Canada," said Reimer.

StarFish Medical, Canada’s largest medical device design, development, and manufacturing service provider, has been involved with the project since the beginning.

“Our goal with the Winnipeg Ventilator 2.0 is to deliver a fully-featured ICU ventilator that could save patients’ lives, be manufactured in Canada in the shortest time possible, and not disrupt the supply chain for existing ventilators”, said Scott Phillips, StarFish Medical CEO and founder, in a statement.

-With files from CTV's RachelCrowSpreadingWings.