A look back at 2023: Smith + Nephew

Smith + Nephew Academy Munich

This year brought about a whole gambit of news and developments, of conferences and launches, all coming in thick and fast and excited about the pharmaceutical industry and healthcare system. Not least of these was Smith + Nephew’s opening of a new state-of-the-art surgical innovation and training centre in the heart of Munich, Germany, on 11th October.

Smith + Nephew, a global medical technology company specialising in orthopaedics, advanced wound management, and sports medicine opened the Munich Academy, situated in Kustermann Park in the heart of the city, with the aim of providing a central European hub for surgeons across Europe, the Middle East, and Africa.

It is intended that surgeons and other healthcare specialists will learn the latest surgical techniques using the most advanced technology available, utilising both hands-on and fully immersive digital interactive experiences.

The global ageing population, particularly in industrialised countries, has led to a growing demand for new technology and digital solutions to improve outcomes and meet the cost-efficiencies demanded by value-oriented healthcare systems.

Smith + Nephew is focused on the repair, regeneration, and replacement of soft and hard tissue, striving to restore people’s bodies and their self-belief by using technology to take the limits off living – what it calls ‘Life Unlimited’. Founded in Hull, UK, in 1856, it now operates in more than 100 countries, and generated annual sales of $5.2 billion in 2022.

The S+N Academy Munich is the latest addition to a global network of nine Academies, situated across three continents and is expected, by its peak, to train up to 5,000 global healthcare providers at the site each year. Additionally, it will also serve as a hub to connect healthcare professionals with global marketing and R&D teams, so as to test and validate new technologies.

Smith + Nephew’s global senior VP for medical education, Cynthia Walker, commented: “‘Our investment in S+N Academy Munich is part of a global commitment to drive innovation and learning in medical technology, creating an environment where the best healthcare providers can learn, collaborate, and innovate, in order to meet the needs of their patients.”

​Meanwhile, Kenneth Garcia, senior VP & GM for orthopaedics international at Smith + Nephew, said: “In 2023, we launched more than 20 new products in orthopaedics, sports medicine, and wound care. The evolution of new technologies is allowing us to constantly realise, develop, and implement what’s possible in healthcare, improving outcomes for patients and meeting the demands of health systems worldwide.”

Indeed, pharmaphorum asked Garcia for further comment on why the company opted for Munich at this particular moment in time and what will follow next for Smith + Nephew, as well as explanation of why upskilling and training robotics and AI are so critical in terms of the future of healthcare. Watch the video below for his responses: