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15 October, 2018 - 14:27 By Tony Quested

Health Secretary lauds Cambridge surgical robot

UK Health Secretary Matt Hancock has praised innovative Cambridge robotics technology that he believes will mean safer, more accessible keyhole surgery for millions of patients worldwide.

Matt Hancock expressed himself highly impressed on his visit to CMR Surgical where CEO Martin Frost displayed the company’s nextgen Versius robot.

Hancock trialled Versius, met its designers and discussed with Frost the company’s plans to introduce the technology into the National Health Service. He said: “This technology has the potential to make keyhole surgery safer, more accessible and could mean millions of patients will not have to undergo invasive procedures.

“As part of our long-term plan for the NHS we want to create an ecosystem for innovation to allow the NHS to benefit from other ground-breaking technologies and treatments.”

The Secretary of State’s visit occurred just weeks after the company brought Versius out of stealth in all its glory. It also follows CMR Surgical’s record-breaking Series-B funding round in June that raised $100 million – the largest ever Series-B raise by a medical device business in Europe.

Frost said: “The visit from the Health and Social Care Secretary comes at a hugely exciting time for CMR Surgical. We were delighted to welcome Matt and to discuss with him how the NHS can continue to be a world-leader in adopting the latest technology for the benefit of patients.”

CMR Surgical has more than doubled in size in 12 months and now employs over 250 people. 

The company is currently undergoing validation studies for regulatory approval processes in Europe. Versius will be used in hospitals in the UK and continental Europe in the next year, with wider international expansion shortly afterwards.

Business Weekly and law firm Mills & Reeve go under the hood of the $100m fundraising with Martin Frost and investor Victor Christou from Cambridge Innovation Capital at a special forum on November 8. For further details about the event visit the Mills & Reeve website.

• PHOTOGRAPH: UK Health Secretary Matt Hancock (left with CMR Surgical founder and CEO, Martin Frost.

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