Team angelMD • June 12, 2014

Prescient SurgicalWe have shared several posts where we get to know some of the influencers who will be at RxUX. Today we’ll introduce you to Jonathan Coe, the COO of Prescient Surgical. His company focuses on reducing the incidence of surgical site infections. We spoke to Jon about what he’s doing:

Can you tell us about your product?

Jon: Prescient Surgical is committed to reducing the incidence of surgical site infections (SSI), a debilitating liability to the global healthcare system. We’ve developed a platform technology that integrates fluid delivery with a novel wound retraction and protection system. We’ve proven that our approach reduces wound contamination and are excited by the positive feedback we’ve received from surgeons using the device in ongoing clinical trials. Our first 2 products (CleanCision Lap and CleanCision Open) address SSI in laparoscopic and open abdominal surgery, areas with the highest unmet need, and we’re executing an aggressive development plan to expand into vascular access, and orthopedic and endocrine surgeries.

What’s been your biggest challenge in bringing your product to market?

Jon: The regulatory process often requires extended timelines, but I view this to be more of a commercial risk than a project risk. The reason is that you’re delaying the learning process. For us, clinical trials have provided a valuable opportunity to “break the radio silence” and learn how the product will perform in the operating room. But even with success in the OR, it can be difficult to predict the complexities of market adoption. The sooner you run that experiment, the sooner you’re able to adapt to what you learn.

What enabling technology do you think has the most potential to transform health and wellness over the next eighteen months? Next five years?

Jon: Tough question. It’s a big world out there, and the technologies that will have the most impact are probably the ones we’re least aware of. I’d have to say that a malaria vaccine would do wonders to raise the tide of global health, and maybe that’s 5 years out. In the next 18 months, emerging technologies that address infant and/or maternal mortality will have an immediate impact once deployed. Overall, however, I think we’re going to see the most impact from policy changes, frankly. Universal coverage in the U.S., but it pales in comparison to China’s mandate to provide nationwide coverage by 2020 and the potential for India to deliver care in rural settings once dominated by Ayurvedic medicine.

What lessons can we take from consumer technology in digital health and wellness?

Jon: It’s hard to sort out the signal from the noise at this point. Consumer products satisfy many need outside of the medical arena, which I think is fueling the current explosion of innovation in this space. I don’t think “healthcare as entertainment” is a sustainable trajectory. But as the dust settles, I think the winners will be those with the best evidence supporting their premise.

From a design standpoint, what existing product or service has been most influential on your own product or vision?

Jon: At Prescient we’ve always been impressed by the elegant designs that cleverly re-purpose or re-direct existing technology towards solving previously unknown or ignored needs. To that end I’d point out the LigaSure Vessel Sealing instruments, which all but eliminated the tedious process of suturing arteries and veins before dividing them during surgical procedures. Though the technology had been in existence for years, the unique design of the LigaSure device and precise control system was the first to establish the technique as the standard of care.

What single role, process or productivity hack has helped your organization most?

Jon: Three words – mountain bike Thursdays



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Image Credit: Prescient Surgical