By: 30 November 2021
Review: Thousands of surgical clinicians unite at Future Surgery 2021 to help revolutionise patient care

The first ever Future Surgery event to take place in-person has been a huge success with thousands of clinicians uniting at ExCeL London. Over the two days, exhibitors shared insights and training, enabling the entire perioperative team to reflect, and learn how technology and new ways of working are revolutionising patient care and outcomes.

Alongside 96 exhibitors showcasing the latest developments in surgery, the show which took place on the 9 -10 November brought together over 150 world-renowned speakers and experts as part of a CPD accredited programme.

The event has been co-produced with the Royal College of Surgeons of England, to explore a wide array of core topics from disruptive technology, connectivity, human factors, global health innovation, training and research.

With five dedicated educational theatres, the show featured a number of key highlights. This event included, hosting for the first time, from both the annual Association of Surgeons in Training (ASiT) Innovation Summit to promote best practice in surgical training, along with the Association for British HealthTech Industries (ABHI) Surgical Simulation Theatre of the Future.

Claire Brown, Future Surgery Programme Director, said: “After many months of working through the pandemic, and the most challenging of times within our healthcare system, the show offered important insight and training enabling everyone in the perioperative team to come together, reflect, share experiences, and learn about how to technology and new ways of working will revolutionise patient care and outcomes.

“We were delighted to see record attendance this year and look forward to building on this success to deliver another inspirational programme in 2022. The show has been over two years in the making and we wish to extend a huge thank you to our Advisory Board, speakers, partners and exhibitors who have collaborated with us on the journey to bring this fantastic event to life.”

Future Surgery Show has been specifically designed to give insight into innovation in surgery, meet the training needs, promote networking and develop a stronger voice for all surgical professionals and their multidisciplinary teams in perioperative care.

The 2021 show – the first to be delivered face-to-face, provided a long-awaited platform for the surgical community to come together to discuss new products and innovations and the future of the profession. Key amongst this year’s themes were Global Health Innovation, Patient Centred Care, Disruptive Technology, and Sustainability and The Green Theatre.

Some of the highlights included:

●       The Opening Address from Stephen Powis, National Medical Director NHS England/NHS Improvement. Professor Powis provided reflections on the pandemic and the challenges ahead, as well as the plans for elective recovery, workforce and innovation.

●       There was also a lively panel discussion on the ‘Recovery of elective services’. The session discussed solutions, barriers and the impact of COVID on the future of elective NHS services.

●       Double Paralympic Champion in British Cycling Ben Watson spoke about the similarities between elite athletes and surgeons including burn out, over training and mental health.

●       Ramani Moonesinghe, National Clinical Director for Critical and Perioperative Care, NHS England and NHS Improvement, discussed the opportunities for innovation and collaboration in improving patient-centred critical and perioperative care.

●       Professor Shafi Ahmed chaired a panel discussion sponsored by Johnson and Johnson on how adopting a digital ecosystem can support creating a future where medical intervention is smarter, less invasive, and more personalised through data, providing solutions to the most pressing challenges facing the NHS.

●       Ben Challacombe from Guy’s and St Thomas’s Hospital, London performed the first live robotic partial nephrectomy from the hospital which was livestreamed onto the ABHI Surgical Simulation Theatre. Mr Challacombe led the robotic partial nephrectomy on one of the Trust’s patients. The surgeon used the DaVinci robot to make smaller incisions to remove the part of the kidney, avoiding larger cuts and more scarring.

Professor Neil Mortensen, President of the Royal College of Surgeons of England, said: “We are delighted to be partners in this cutting-edge event. Technology has played a crucial role in delivering healthcare during the COVID-19 pandemic and the pace of change has been unprecedented. Future Surgery show is a perfect opportunity to showcase technological advances and assess the implications for patients, the surgical profession and the healthcare system.”

The programme for Future Surgery 2021 is supported by the surgical Royal Colleges of England, Edinburgh, Ireland & Glasgow, ASiT – The Association of Surgeons in Training, The Association for Perioperative Practice (AfPP), NHS Benchmarking Network, British Orthopaedic Association, The Confederation of British Surgery (CBS), College of Operating Department Practitioners (CODP), The Royal College of Nursing, The Royal Society of Medicine, and the Society of Surgical Simulation.

Event sponsors included Johnson & Johnson, Medtronic, CMR Surgical, Sony and Quilter.

Future Surgery 2022 will take place on 15-16 November at ExCeL, London