Innovative solution to pandemic training problem

The VELYS Digital Surgery Mobile Lab is a self-contained meeting, training and lab space

How can medical specialists keep up with ever-advancing technology during the restrictions of a pandemic?

If surgeons cannot travel to learn new skills, then take the training to them – that’s the practical solution to the problem soon taking to Australia’s roads and highways.

DePuy Synthes, the orthopaedics business unit of Johnson & Johnson Medical Australia, has launched the country’s first travelling knowledge hub for the medical industry in the form of an innovative mobile laboratory.

Mounted on a semi-trailer, the VELYS Digital Surgery Mobile Lab is a self-contained meeting, training and lab space bringing next-generation education directly to surgeons and their teams around Australia.

It will provide on-site access to virtual reality-based operating environments and real-time collaboration with the global surgical community, helping Australian orthopaedic surgeons to be proficient with the company’s latest innovation in knee replacement surgery, the VELYS Robotic-Assisted Solution.

“We’re making next-generation training easily available at a surgeon’s place of work with our ground-breaking mobile training lab and suite of solutions,” said Ben Travers, Vice-President of DePuy Synthes Australia.

Recent research in the United Kingdom has shown that the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic is affecting more than just operative and clinical experiences in hospital settings.

It has also increased the need for surgical training that moves away from traditional education models and supports a more flexible and accessible learning environment.

“An increasing number of surgical procedures utilise robotic assistance,” Mr Travers added.

“It is critical to address the learning curve when adopting next-generation med tech to utilise it effectively and take advantage of its efficiencies.

That’s why we’re making significant investments in next-generation training to provide comprehensive and personalised learning for the VELYS Robotic-Assisted Solution.”

The VELYS system is the next-generation in robotic-assisted surgery for knee replacement

The mobile training lab is part of a suite of training solutions DePuy Synthes Australia and the Johnson & Johnson Institute are providing that will blend traditional training programs with new technologies.

As well as the mobile lab, these include:

  • Virtual reality operating environments where surgeons can experience virtual surgical procedures using the VELYS Robotic-Assisted Solution while connected with other surgeons around the world
  • Life-like, 3D-printed surgical models for an enhanced surgical training experience
  • A dedicated and personalised online learning platform

The VELYS system is the next-generation in robotic-assisted surgery for knee replacement, developed to support the positioning of implants to align with each patient’s individual anatomy.

It incorporates a first-of-its-kind operating table mounted solution that adapts to the surgeon’s workflow, using advanced planning capabilities and proprietary technology to help accurately resect bones that align and position the implant relative to the soft-tissue during total knee replacement without the need for pre-operative imaging.

The compact design integrates into any operating room and has a smaller footprint, less than half the size of some other robotic-assisted solutions.

The mobile lab will begin its tour around Australia in late October.

Healthcare professionals can experience a virtual 3D tour of the lab at the Australian Orthopaedic Association’s online Annual Scientific Meeting from 8-10 November 2021, where there will also be live video crosses for VELYS Robotic-Assisted Solution demonstration sessions.

Johnson & Johnson is a Major Sponsor of the Australian Private Hospitals Association.

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