Medtronic plc MDT recently announced the integration of its Hugo robotic-assisted surgery (RAS) system at Hospital Clinico de la Red de Salud UC CHRISTUS in Santiago, Chile, to support the teaching institution's new robotic surgery program. UC CHRISTUS is the latest entrant to Medtronic's Partners in Possibility Program. This program consists of a group of pioneering hospitals that will be among the first in the world to use the Hugo RAS system in support of the Hugo system patient registry.
Robotic surgery is a form of minimally-invasive surgery that presents fewer complications, shorter hospital stays, faster return to normal activities, and smaller scars compared to open surgery. Per the company data, open procedures constitute approximately 75% of surgeries in Latin America.
The Hugo RAS system is anticipated to offer a solution to the historic cost and utilization barriers that have kept surgical robotics out of reach for many hospitals. Per the company data, robots are used in less than 3% of surgeries globally despite the several benefits.
The Hugo RAS system is expected to bolster the Surgical Robotics business, which is part of Medtronic’s Medical Surgical Portfolio. The latest integration of Hugo RAS with UC CHRISTUS aligns with the company’s surgical robotics vision to broaden access to quality care and expand its reach across more regions.
Efforts to Expand in Latin America
Medtronic opened the new Surgical Robotics Experience Center in Santiago, in partnership with the Faculty of Medicine of Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile, affiliated with UC CHRISTUS. This center is the company's first in Latin America and 1 of 10 world-class facilities around the globe, intended to enable clinicians experience and train on the Hugo RAS system.
Few Words on Hugo RAS
The Hugo RAS system is a modular, multi-quadrant platform which combines the precision of wristed instruments with the flexibility of independent robotic arm carts and best-in-class 3D visualization technology on an open console. It is designed for a broad range of soft-tissue procedures. This system features a cloud-based surgical video capture option powered by artificial intelligence in Touch Surgery Enterprise that permits surgeons to seamlessly record, analyze and share Hugo system case footage.
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The Hugo RAS system is not authorized in the United States or Europe. Its availability and approval will be determined by regulatory requirements of individual countries and regions.
Per a report published in MarketsandMarkets, the global surgical robots market is expected to see a CAGR of 17.6% during 2021 to 2026. Factors driving market growth include several benefits of robotic-assisted surgery, growing funds for robotic research, increasing adoption of surgical robots and advanced visualization capabilities associated with robotic-assisted surgeries.
Given the substantial market prospects, the recent integration of Hugo RAS system with UC CHRISTUS bears strategic significance.
In July 2021, Medtronic announced the publication of an economic model based on data from its sponsored PRODIGY trial (PRediction of Opioid-induced respiratory Depression In patients monitored by capnoGraphY). This model demonstrated that a continuous pulse oximetry and capnography monitoring for patients receiving opioids on medical-surgical units can reduce the hospital cost burden and length of patient stay compared to intermittent pulse oximetry monitoring alone.
In June 2021, Medtronic initiated the DEFINE AFib study to understand atrial fibrillation burden in patients and its impact on patient outcomes, quality of life and healthcare, utilizing data collected from its LINQ range of insertable cardiac monitors (ICMs). The DEFINE AFib is the company's first app-based research study with sophisticated data aggregation capabilities and remote monitoring using the LINQ range of ICMs.
Same month, the company reported first successful patient procedure with the Hugo RAS system at Clínica Santa María in Chile. This first patient procedure initiated the beginning of Hugo RAS system patient registry, which is intended to collect clinical data in support of regulatory submissions.
Share Price Performance
The stock has outperformed its industry over the past year. It has grown 31.6% compared to the industry’s 8.4% growth.
Zacks Rank and Key Picks
Currently, Medtronic carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold).
A few better-ranked stocks from the Medical-Products industry include Envista Holdings Corporation NVST, HillRom Holdings, Inc. HRC and BellRing Brands, Inc. BRBR, each sporting a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.
Envista Holdings has a long-term earnings growth rate of 26.4%.
HillRom Holdings has a long-term earnings growth rate of 7.9%.
BellRing Brands has a long-term earnings growth rate of 25.3%.
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