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New robotic surgical system revolutionises patient care at UHCW

University Hospitals Coventry and Warwickshire (UHCW) NHS Trust is proud to announce the installation of a ground-breaking new robotic-assisted surgical system, allowing for a wider range of minimally invasive procedures to be carried out than ever before.

Revolutionising patient care, the new da Vinci X surgical system joins the Trust’s other fourth-generation Xi model and ensures patients are able to receive precise and advanced operations including prostate, kidney, bladder, bowel, throat, oesophageal, liver, pancreatic, gynaecology and lung.

With a 60% reduction in patients’ length of stay, the system has been a key component in seeing UHCW NHS Trust become the first teaching Trust in the country to eliminate the number of patients waiting more than 104 weeks for elective surgery since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic.

Made possible through £1.5 million in funding from Coventry Hospitals Charity, founded by healthcare staff and local businesses in the 1980s, the system has also seen a major 66% improvement in cancer outcomes.

Robotic-assisted surgery enables delicate and complex operations through a few small incisions, using instruments attached to the arms of the surgical system, with surgeons utilising a console to control the system’s arms and instruments.

The new system will build on the success of the da Vinci Si, which has been used to perform more than 1,500 life-changing operations at the Trust since its arrival in 2013.

Professor Andy Hardy, Chief Executive Officer of UHCW NHS Trust, praised the impact robotic-assisted surgery can have on the care patients receive: “I am incredibly proud to be able to offer our patients the most cutting-edge surgery through the use of the da Vinci systems by our world-leading consultants.

“Through their use we have already been able to clear our two-year waiting list and are working hard towards clearing our entire backlog.

“For our patients, robotic-assisted surgery has huge benefits as it not only offers enhanced precision and magnification, but greatly reduces recovery times post-surgery meaning people can get back on their feet more quickly.

“We're proud to be a pioneer in offering state-of-the-art care and, as one of 20 centres of excellence in the UK, we are being recognised for our approach to robotics on a local, regional and national level.”

One patient who recently underwent successful robotic-assisted surgery at UHCW NHS Trust was First Dates barman Merlin Griffiths.

Merlin underwent bowel cancer surgery to remove a tumour and shared his experience on social media in the days following his discharge from hospital.

He said of his care: “I am very grateful to be provided with excellent care at UHCW as part of their surgical pathway, this includes state-of-the-art robotic-assisted surgery.

“The da Vinci robot has meant that my recovery has been far quicker than it would have been though traditional surgery, alongside the excellent care provided by the staff has meant that I was back on my feet in no time.

“People who need to undergo robotic-assisted surgery can be very confident that the system is hugely effective.”

David Marante, Regional Director at Intuitive UK & Ireland, the makers of the da Vinci surgical systems used by surgeons and their teams at UHCW, said: “The team at Coventry is another great example of the NHS providing innovative solutions to clear surgical backlogs by expanding access to robotic-assisted surgery for more patients with our da Vinci systems.

“Our aim is to collaborate and support surgeons and their teams to train in more specialty areas which could enhance and extend the level of care they are able to offer to patients and improve patient outcomes.”

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