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News & Trends - MedTech & Diagnostics

Medtronic unveils its new robot-assisted surgery system

Health Industry Hub | September 30, 2019 |

Medtronic claims it has a new robot-assisted surgery platform that is more flexible and cost-effective than systems presently on the market.

That appeared to be the message out from the world’s largest medical device company as it unveiled its much-awaited Hugo RAS system. The system is Medtronic’s answer to a growing market that remains dominated by Intuitive Surgical and its da Vinci SP.

Medtronic EVP Bob White claimed that only 2% of surgeries around the world are held with the assistance of robots.

“There’s 98% out there that needs to be done via robotically-assisted surgery but not today because of the cost and utilisation burdens,” said White, who is president of the Medtronic’s Minimally Invasive Therapies Group.

CEO Omar Ishrak said “In 10 years, not only this robot but other robots we have going will change the face of surgery.”

Medtronic plans to launch the Hugo system in undisclosed places outside the U.S. early the next year, allowing the company to start gathering clinical data, White said. CE Mark and U.S. IDE submissions will follow later in the year, with a goal of achieving U.S. 510(k) clearance in about two years.

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White said Medtronic won’t “give the robot away” to health providers, but he’d like to see the company drive procedure costs for the system down to levels seen with laparoscopic systems.

Medtronic is already active in the robot-assisted spine surgery space after its  $1.7 billion purchase of Mazor Robotics in December 2018.

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