INTUIVE SURGICAL'S INTERNAL EMAILS SHOW DESIRE TO SCALE BACK ROBOTIC SURGERY TRAINING

By Thamanna Hussain

A news report cites exposed emails in a da Vinci surgical robot lawsuit filed in Washington State Superior Court, Kitsap County, that indicate Intuitive Surgical may have encouraged sales representatives to push hospitals to decrease surgeon training on the machine. Evidence of this was shown in a manager's email in which a sales representative was praised for convincing a hospital that five supervised training operations on the robot were too many. In another email, a manager was advised not to let credentials get in the way of sales goals. Intuitive Surgical has been named in 10 lawsuits in recent months by victims of da Vinci surgery complications and almost all cite Intuitive's training procedure. Our firm has filed the first robotic lawsuit in New York state, McCalla, which is a wrongful death case presently in the pre-trial discovery phase in the Bronx County Supreme Court.

With new allegations in the da Vinci robot lawsuits, questions are being raised about the quality of training surgeons have received to properly carry out the surgeries. Is maintaining sales growth more important than the lives of countless individuals who are at potential risk? Did Intuitive Surgical take advantage of a weak FDA which left the training parameters to be decided by this for-profit company.

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