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Intuitive Surgical Joins Industry Partners in Sponsorship of the American Hernia Society's Quality Collaborative

SUNNYVALE, Calif., Feb. 24, 2015 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Intuitive Surgical, Inc. (Nasdaq:ISRG), the global leader in robotic-assisted minimally invasive surgery, today announced its founding partnership in the American Hernia Society Quality Collaborative (AHSQC). This surgeon-led, online quality initiative is designed to enable surgeons to share real-time patient data about abdominal hernias, review peer and institutional data, and assess best practices, decision support and care pathways. The goal is to advance hernia care by improving outcomes and decreasing costs.

"Scientifically driven quality initiatives like AHSQC are one of the important ways to advance patient care and we are pleased to join industry partners in supporting AHSQC," said Dr. Myriam Curet, Senior Vice President, Chief Medical Officer, Intuitive Surgical.

Intuitive Surgical is among six foundation partners in the collaborative. The service, which is free to American Hernia Society (AHS) members, is designed to enable clinicians, surgeons, care coordinators and professional society members to share patient data and surgical practices. Approximately 39 medical institutions, 84 surgeons and 2,859 patients have enrolled in the AHSQC database since its launch in 2013.

"We at the AHSQC are extremely excited to work with Intuitive Surgical to further define the value of robotics in abdominal wall reconstruction and ventral hernia repair," said Dr. Michael J. Rosen, FACS Professor of Surgery, Cleveland Clinic Foundation, Comprehensive Hernia Center, and AHSQC Medical Director. "We feel that this partnership will allow us to work closely with Intuitive Surgical to measure the quality of care provided by robotic hernia repair."

The initiative is working to address a number of issues related to improving health outcomes for patients with hernias and to optimizing costs for surgical hernia repair. AHSQC is enabling patient-centered data collection, ongoing performance feedback to clinicians, and improvements based on analysis of collected data and collaborative learning. Among the issues being assessed are factors that contribute to hernia recurrence, quality of life after hernia repair, reduction in surgical-site complications, evaluation of the advantages of minimally invasive repair approaches, minimizing perioperative pain and more.

A variety of clinical outcomes information is collected in the AHSQC database, including patient demographics, preoperative evaluation, operative details, 30-day follow-up, patient-entered long-term follow-up via a patient portal, and surgeon-entered long-term follow-up. The assessment applies to incisional, ventral and parastomal hernias.

"It is critical that we follow and track the results of our operations to determine the best options that help our patients. We should all take responsibility for fostering a culture of quality improvement," said Dr. Benjamin K. Poulose, M.P.H., AHSQC Director of Quality and Outcomes.

Other surgical societies have created collaboratives like the AHSQC to improve clinical care through qualitative and quantitative surgical data. These include the Michigan Bariatric Surgery Collaborative, the Urology Quality Collaborative, Vascular Surgery Quality Collaborative and the Orthopedic Quality Collaborative.

About Foundation Partnership

The American Hernia Society Educational Foundation, a 501(c)(3) organization, exists to support the finances and mission of American Hernia Society, Inc., a not-for-profit Florida corporation. As a silver-level foundation partner, Intuitive Surgical has provided a one-time $50,000 gift to the foundation. In return, Intuitive Surgical will receive attendance data at AHSQC quarterly meetings and an annual summary report. Foundation partners have no involvement in data collection or database design.

About Intuitive Surgical, Inc.

Intuitive Surgical, Inc. (Nasdaq:ISRG), headquartered in Sunnyvale, Calif., is the global leader in robotic-assisted, minimally invasive surgery. Intuitive Surgical develops, manufactures and markets the da Vinci Surgical System.

About the da Vinci Surgical System

The da Vinci Surgical System is a surgical platform designed to enable complex surgery using a minimally invasive approach. The da Vinci Surgical System consists of an ergonomic surgeon console or consoles, a patient-side cart with three or four interactive arms, a high-performance vision system and proprietary EndoWrist® instruments. Powered by state-of-the-art technology, the da Vinci Surgical System is designed to scale, filter and seamlessly translate the surgeon's hand movements into more precise movements of the EndoWrist instruments. The net result is an intuitive interface with improved surgical capabilities. By providing surgeons with superior visualization, enhanced dexterity, greater precision and ergonomic comfort, the da Vinci Surgical System makes it possible for skilled surgeons to perform more minimally invasive procedures involving complex dissection or reconstruction. Potential benefits are specific to the procedure as well as the model da Vinci Surgical System. For more information about clinical evidence related to da Vinci Surgery, please visit www.intuitivesurgical.com/company/clinical-evidence/.

Important Safety Information

Negative outcomes risks and complications of ventral hernia repair may include recurrence, bowel injury, infection of mesh, and urinary retention.

Serious complications may occur in any surgery, including da Vinci Surgery, up to and including death. Risks include, but are not limited to, injury to tissues and organs and conversion to other surgical techniques. If your doctor needs to convert the surgery to another surgical technique, this could result in a longer operative time, additional time under anesthesia, additional or larger incisions and/or increased complications. Individual surgical results may vary. Patients who are not candidates for non-robotic minimally invasive surgery are also not candidates for da Vinci Surgery. Patients should talk to their doctor to decide if da Vinci Surgery is right for them. Patients and doctors should review all available information on non-surgical and surgical options in order to make an informed decision. Please also refer to www.daVinciSurgery.com/Safety for Important Safety Information.

Forward-Looking Statement

This press release contains forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. These forward-looking statements are necessarily estimates reflecting the best judgment of our management and involve a number of risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those suggested by the forward-looking statements. These forward-looking statements should, therefore, be considered in light of various important factors, including those under the heading "Risk Factors" in our annual report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2013, as updated from time to time by our quarterly reports on Form 10-Q and our other filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Statements using words such as "estimates," "projects," "believes," "anticipates," "plans," "expects," "intends," "may," "will," "could," "should," "would," "targeted" and similar words and expressions are intended to identify forward-looking statements. You are cautioned not to place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements, which speak only as of the date of this press release. We undertake no obligation to publicly update or release any revisions to these forward-looking statements, except as required by law.

CONTACT: Intuitive Surgical Corporate Communications 408-523-7337 corp.comm@intusurg.com

Source:Intuitive Surgical, Inc.