Dr. Gwenyth Fischer, director of The Pediatric Device Innovation Consortium at the University of Minnesota, thinks the seven-year-old group may have a bit of an edge over similar groups elsewhere in the U.S.
The advantage could be summed up in one word: “location.”
Minneapolis-St. Paul is a major U.S. medical device hub — a tight-knit community of people with product development, regulatory, reimbursement and other expertise. The PDIC is able to focus not only on funding but on getting doctors and other academics with innovative ideas linked with Twin Cities experts to get their concepts commercialized. There’s also tight project management, with weekly, sometimes daily, calls and frequent advisory board meetings.
“We understand that academics have a lot of strong skill sets, but getting a device to market in those later stages is not what a lot of academic centers have the ability to do,” Fischer said.