Health

200+ Robotic Surgeries in First Year!

Randwick, Sydney - The Prince of Wales Private Hospital is celebrating a surgical milestone: more than 200 robotic procedures have been performed since the launch of its multi-disciplinary robotics program in October 2018.

Robert Cusack, General Manager of Prince of Wales Private Hospital, says the program has been more successful than anticipated.

“We were told that 100 robotic cases in our first year would be a good outcome,” he said. “So, to have surpassed the 200-mark is really above and beyond our best-case expectations.”

The Hospital has performed robot-assisted cases across general, urology, cardiothoracic, colorectal and gynaecology surgical specialties since the arrival of the da Vinci Xi® Surgical System by Device Technologies.

Dr Shing Wong, Colorectal and General Surgeon, performed the Hospital’s very first robotics case in 2018 using the da Vinci System and is one of the Hospital’s most experienced robotic surgeons. Bowel resections for malignant and benign diseases are among his most common robotic surgical cases.

“The robot is especially helpful when operating on patients with high BMI and dense adhesions. It provides magnified three-dimensional vision, an advanced set of instruments, and a level of precision not previously available using minimally invasive methods," said Dr Wong.

“Prince of Wales Private Hospital has made the robot accessible to a range of surgeons and specialties, which results in improved outcomes for more patients.”

Among those to benefit from the Hospital’s multi-disciplinary program approach are patients under Cardiothoracic Surgeons, Dr Levi Bassin and Dr Hugh Wolfenden. The doctors perform a range of surgeries together at Prince of Wales Private Hospital, including minimal access coronary surgeries and mitral valve repairs.

“Whilst the safety profile of robotic is similar to open surgery to date, the sternal bone isn’t cut which reduces bleeding, pain and the prospect of infection,” Doctor Wolfenden said. “The three arms of the robot are essentially like an extension of the surgeon’s arms and hands – it allows complete dexterity through tiny incisions.”

Dr Bassin says that robotic surgery is a game-changer for patient recovery times. “Most robotic patients return to virtually full capacity within four weeks,” he said. “Open surgery, however, can take six weeks to get back to work for a sedentary job or three months for a physically demanding occupation.”

Although robotic surgery is growing rapidly in Australia, Mr Cusack believes the momentum at Prince of Wales Private Hospital is down to multiple factors coming together in a well-planned way.

“Firstly, we have a team of incredibly-skilled, internationally-trained surgeons who choose to operate here. Also, the sophistication of the da Vinci System, plus the training and support from the supplier, Device Technologies, is very high,” he said.

“When you combine this with the Hospital’s agility around new technologies and the quality of patient care provided, we’ve been able to shine in this rapidly emerging and exciting area of surgery.”


*Media enquiries: Colette Webber, Business Development Manager - Prince of Wales Private Hospital, 0438 127 685


Prince of Wales Private Hospital delivers exceptional healthcare, specialising in acute surgery and maternity services. The Hospital is independently recognised for clinical safety and service excellence and for achieving outstanding patient outcomes.