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Politicians to appreciate the new experimental operating theatre

The experimental operating theatre at the University Hospital in Tübingen is currently attracting nationwide attention. The simulation and testing laboratory was officially opened on the 14th July by Minister President Günther H. Oettinger, and on the same day was elected as ”Selected Landmark” in the ”365 Landmarks in the Land of Ideas” innovation contest for its sustainability. At the beginning of July, Federal Research Minister Dr. Annette Schavan came to Tübingen to talk about the potential of medical technology and biotechnology.

Minister President Günther Oettinger opening the experimental operating theatre located in an old factory. (Photo: BIOPRO)
In an effort to intensify the “dialogue between science and politics”, the CDU member of the Bundestag from Tübingen and chairperson of the Health Workgroup of the CDU/CSU Bundestag faction, Annette Widmann-Mauz, organised an open dialogue between Dr. Schavan and representatives from regional hospitals and research institutions, the rectors of the universities of Stuttgart and Tübingen as well as representatives from local biotech companies.

A few weeks prior to Dr. Schavan’s visit to Tübingen, the Neckar-Alb region became one of the Federal Ministry of Education and Research’s (BMBF) leading “Health Regions of the Future”. At around the same time, the “Medical Technology and Health Tuttlingen/Neckar-Alb – MedCare TechArea” cluster presented its strategy to the BMBF for the final round in the Top Cluster competition. A key project in this strategy is the experimental operating theatre at the University Hospital of Tübingen. All good enough reasons for the Minister from Berlin to come and visit the Swabian university city to see the developments first hand.

Innovation alliance brings success

During her visit to Tübingen on the 3rd July 2008, Dr. Annette Schavan referred to the MedCare TechArea top cluster strategy as a role model of innovation alliances between industry and science. And it was indeed such an alliance that led to the launch of the experimental operating theatre project. In order to set up this European-wide institution for research and novel medical device developments, entrepreneurs, politicians and scientists had to work closely together, especially in terms of financing: the University Hospital of Tübingen, the Medical Faculty of Tübingen, the University of Stuttgart and the state of Baden-Württemberg gave approximately 2.3 million euros; a group of approximately 80 industrial cooperation partners provided around 3 million euros.

About 1000 square meters of laboratory and office space, as well as an own workshop, will from now on facilitate the development and testing of new surgical techniques, surgical devices, procedures and rooms. At the same time, this platform is an optimal educational environment for doctors, surgical assistants and nurses as well as technicians and engineers.

Patients and staff benefit from the experimental operating theatre

Operating theatres are among the most cost-intensive hospital departments. If the experimental model leads to a successful design for an operating theatre of the future, then new quality standards can be set at the same time as increasing efficiency. This would result in considerable cost reductions for the healthcare system. In the final analysis, not only operating theatre staff will benefit from such new developments, but also the patients themselves, said Prof. Dr. Ingo B. Autenrieth, Dean of the Medical Faculty, speaking at the official opening of the experimental operating theatre. Dr. Paul-Stephan Mauz, chairman of the experimental operating theatre and head of ergonomics added: “Our goal is to get to the horizontal and vertical transfer stage more quickly, especially as far as our influence on guidelines, norms and standards is concerned.”

Many people attended the official opening, including scientists, politicians and entrepreneurs from the medical technology sector. Minister President Günther H. Oettinger praised the successful cooperation between science and industry in the development of the experimental operating theatre. He highlighted the importance of strengthening the capacities of small- and medium-sized companies through links with university research, and also referred to the successful cooperation between the universities of Stuttgart and Tübingen. He also highlighted the success of the “MedCare TechArea” in Germany’s Top Cluster competition, which was only possible thanks to the commitment of scientists, entrepreneurs and politicians working together, coordinated ably by the state-owned BIOPRO Baden-Württemberg GmbH.
The official opening of the experimental operating theatre in Tübingen, which is also part of the MedCare TechArea cluster, attracted many people. (Photo: BIOPRO)
The official opening of the experimental operating theatre in Tübingen, which is also part of the MedCare TechArea cluster, attracted many people. (Photo: BIOPRO)
Or – 14th July 2008
© BIOPRO Baden-Württemberg GmbH

Further information:

Petra Pauline Remmlinger
Head of Business Development, Technology Transfer and Knowledge Management
BIOPRO Baden-Württemberg GmbH
Breitscheidstr. 10
70174 Stuttgart
Fax: +49 (0)711/218285-02
E-mail: remmlinger@bio-pro.de
Website address: https://www.gesundheitsindustrie-bw.de/en/article/news/politicians-to-appreciate-the-new-experimental-operating-theatre