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Momentis CEO Talks Human Touch as Inspiration for Devices & Innovation

Momentis Surgical CEO, Dvir Cohen shares his inspiration and what it takes to be successful in medtech.

Katie Pfaff

July 26, 2022

5 Min Read
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Image courtesy of Momentis Surgical

Momentis Surgical recently went through a rebranding. The surgical robotics company, formerly known as Memic Innovative Surgery, changed its name to something more suitable for its mission.

MD+DI spoke to Momentis Surgical CEO Dvir Cohen about the rebranding for an episode of the Let’s Talk Medtech podcast. Following that conversation MD+DI spoke with Cohen about his experience in medtech and the advice he has for others in the industry.

Responses from Dvir Cohen, CEO at Momentis Surgical

MD+DI: How long have you been in the medtech industry and when did you first become interested in healthcare?

Cohen: I have been in the healthcare industry for nine years. I’ve always had a keen interest in healthcare, specifically in leveraging advanced technologies to solve unmet needs. It is my passion and the reason I decided to specialize in advanced multidisciplinary systems such as robotic assisted technologies. But I have more than 15 years of experience in innovative robotic systems in general. Before I co-founded Momentis Surgical, I served in various positions in the Israeli Ministry of Defense over several years as an awarded officer specializing in robotic systems for various applications. One of my positions during this time was R&D manager and robotic project specialist in an elite technology unit of the Israel Intelligence Force. I also led several opto-mechanical disruptive solutions in the Ministry of Defense, one of which won the Israel Defense Award.

MD+DI: How do you maintain a healthy work-life balance?

Cohen: As a global organization in Israel and the US, and as a CEO of a company, it is indeed a challenge. My mind never stops working. However, I always ensure I spend quality time with my family. I prioritize starting and ending my days with my wife and children. Luckily, we are early risers and connect before the day’s routine begins and I always keep an open time between 8PM and 10PM to be with them before I start afternoon calls with the US office.

MD+DI: What time do you start your day and why that time?

Cohen: I have a strict workout routine and wake up at 5AM to run every morning. This time is important to me because I use it to reflect on what is working and what is not, to get inspired with new ideas, and to focus on what I plan to achieve in the coming days.

MD+DI: Do you have any work mantras or approaches that guide or ground you throughout your day?

Cohen: I know I am not the first person to emphasize the importance of walking the corridors, but I am a big believer in this practice. Every chance I have between meetings, I am walking the office floors to actively engage with all employees. It connects me with the day-to-day, allows me to identify potential barriers, celebrate successes, and it simply connects me to people. In my experience, I continue to be amazed at how much information, new ideas, process improvements, and opportunities to improve our organization’s efficiency are raised in spontaneous conversations. In our market, where our products make physical attendance a necessity, it always amazes me the degree to which this in-person activity fosters an innovative spirit. When you have a culture of innovation, this creativity bubbles in the simplest of conversations, and this is what gets me excited and [makes me] proud of the people I work with.

MD+DI: What have you learned about medtech that you did not know before going into the space?

Cohen: I have learned the surgical team’s ability to execute as one is extremely important to provide optimal care to patients. The surgeon is just one person ‒ clearly the lead ‒ on the surgical team who collaborates with all involved to provide the best solution. When flawless teamwork is achieved within the OR, it is like a symphony. The value of teamwork is what inspired the open console architecture of our system, which provides direct line of sight to all members of the surgical staff, to the patient, and the ability to physically communicate throughout the procedure.

MD+DI: What motivates you each day, or what helps to motivate your teams daily?

Cohen: What motivates me to encourage and support my team is knowing that we are leveraging technology to evolve the field of surgical robotics to provide better patient outcomes, to improve the surgical experience for both patients and surgeons, and to advance the healthcare ecosystem.

MD+DI: Do you take inspiration from any source for innovation? If so, what and how does it inspire you?

Cohen: I find inspiration in the human body. There is so much wisdom in the way it operates and so much to further learn and explore. Finding new ways to mimic the body is both enlightening and inspiring. This is the source of inspiration for the inception of Momentis Surgical. I thought what if instead of straight sticks, which is the traditional design of surgical robotics, we developed a surgical robot that had graspers that functioned like fingers. Thinking about how the human body functions and working to translate a human or surgeon’s agility and dexterity into a medical device is what led to the development of the Anovo™ Surgical System, which has humanoid-shaped arms with shoulder, elbow, and wrist joints and functions as if surgeons were miniaturized and placed inside the body to perform surgical procedures.

MD+DI: What are you most excited about in the future of medtech?

Cohen: There are endless opportunities for how the medtech industry might evolve in the coming years. What seemed like science fiction just a few years ago does not seem to be fictional anymore. I can imagine a world where using new and innovative technologies can allow us to reach places we have never dreamed of reaching otherwise while minimizing invasiveness. I can imagine a day when the best surgeons in the world are able to perform surgeries without requiring their physical presence in the OR room. There are so many dreams, with so much to do, and our team at Momentis Surgical is excited to be a part of this industry and lead efforts in developing advanced surgical robotics that have the potential to disrupt various indications, starting with gynecological surgery.

MD+DI: What book are you currently reading?

Cohen: A good book is always appreciated on long flights, but more frequently I listen to podcasts, such as “Medical Device Success” by Ted Newill.

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