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Most of us will need some kind of surgical intervention during our lifetime. Indeed, over 50 million procedures are performed each year in the US (4.6 million in England). Some 50% of cancer patients can be cured by one of these interventions alone. Yet, despite the explosion of new devices and technologies there have been few significant advances in the last 20 years. Why?

The challenge is bridging the gap between surgeons and scientists – technologists, geneticists, biochemists, statisticians, engineers and many others. New technologies offer exciting opportunities to improve patient outcomes but will only be fully realised if surgeons and scientists work together from the design all the way through to the completion of successful patient trials.

The Oxford Centre for Innovation and Interventional Technology (OCIT) will be dedicated to the rapid delivery of innovative new technology-driven interventions with the overarching ethos of ‘less is more’, enabling less invasive procedures with fewer side-effects. It will focus on addressing specific unmet clinical needs. There will also be a strong focus on increasing efficiency in healthcare pathways, sometimes by using small and clever new devices, and reducing costs for the NHS in the UK, and other health providers globally.

OCIT will build on Oxford’s successful track record in developing new interventions, including Organox, TARDOX and FIGS. This has been, and will continue to be, greatly facilitated by Oxford’s Clinical BioManufacturing Facility and the UK regulatory framework which, unlike anywhere else in the world, enables a new idea to be translated into ‘first in man’ testing and adoption in patients in a uniquely short timescale.

The Centre will work in collaboration with a number of outstanding industrial partners, and an agreement has already been signed with the world-leading McLaren Formula 1 team. OCIT will be an experimental platform for these partners to develop new device prototypes through to proof of concept, ready for testing in patients. We are confident that OCIT will generate exciting spin out opportunities.

The UK is the only country in the world where timely progress can be made in this exciting new field of technology-driven interventions, and Oxford has a unique opportunity to take a lead and create an international centre of excellence.

Together, we believe OCIT has the opportunity to transform interventions and patient outcomes.