The man Stanford University once dubbed “The Mickey Mantle of medical device inventors” still has his swing, or at least his sway in the industry, judging by the reaction Dr. Thomas Fogarty received in Boston recently at a round-table discussion of medical device innovation.
Fogarty is a renowned cardiologist and serial inventor with more than 100 surgical patents to his name, including the Fogarty balloon catheter, his first and best-known contribution. In Boston, the 76-year-old could barely find time to break away from well-wishers long enough to choke down a bagel. He was repeatedly approached by those wanting to thank him for helping start a career or seeking advice on starting a business. Then there were those who just wanted to tell he’s a legend in the medical technology game.
“It’s not only regulation. It’s inappropriate regulation, unnecessary regulation and impossible regulation. The people creating the regulations are people that are only observers. They’re not combatants in the field, they’ve never done it.”
The physician, inventor and former Stanford professor is now the head of the institute that bears his name. The Fogarty Institute for Innovation is a non-profit in Mountain View, Calif., with a mission to help train and “inspire the next generation of medical innovators.”
MassDevice had the chance to sit down with Fogarty to discuss the current climate for medical innovation, 510(k) reform, venture capital and why his passion for winemaking represents an extension of his medical career.
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