Intuitive Appoints New General Manager in South Korea

August 31, 2021 at 4:25 PM EDT

SUNNYVALE, Calif., Aug. 31, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Intuitive (Nasdaq: ISRG), a global technology leader in minimally invasive care and the pioneer of robotic-assisted surgery, today announced the appointment of Yong-Bum Choi as General Manager for South Korea, where he will direct business strategy and operations for the company.

“South Korea remains a key market for minimally invasive care, and we are confident that Yong-Bum Choi will help Intuitive strengthen its position in the country’s healthcare market and our continued collaboration with South Korea hospitals and surgeons,” said Intuitive President of South Korea and Japan Kazuhiro Takizawa. “Choi’s extensive experience in both the region and the healthcare industry will benefit our customers and employees.”

Choi joins Intuitive with more than 26 years of experience in healthcare, previously working for companies including Janssen Korea, Eli Lilly and Co., Novartis and AstraZeneca. For the last three years, he served as the South Korea General Manager for Ferring Pharmaceuticals. Prior to that, he served as the South Korea General Manager for Baxter.

Additionally, Choi’s global leadership background includes a position overseeing cardiovascular portfolio business in emerging markets including China, Japan, Russia, Turkey, and Brazil.

“South Korea is a dynamic and essential country for Intuitive, and Yong-Bum Choi’s depth, breadth, and success in global leadership assignments will help enable us to further advance patient access to our technologies,” said Glenn Vavoso, Senior Vice President and General Manager of Asia at Intuitive. “South Korea hospitals and surgeons have played a pivotal role in the adoption of robotic-assisted surgery, in developing evidence of its clinical value, and innovating in minimally invasive techniques and solutions. We look forward to building on this important work under Yong-Bum Choi’s leadership.”

Intuitive entered the South Korean market in 2005, and the first robotic-assisted surgery in South Korea with da Vinci robotic-assisted surgical system was performed later that same year at the Yonsei University’s Severance Hospital. Today, more than 110 systems are in South Korea, with more than 190,000 total robotic-assisted surgical procedures performed to date.

Intuitive pioneered the field of robotic-assisted minimally invasive surgery more than two decades ago with the da Vinci surgical system. Since then, more than 8.5 million procedures have been performed using da Vinci systems, with more than 55,000 surgeons worldwide trained on da Vinci systems.

“I was particularly attracted to joining Intuitive because of its commitment to improving patient outcomes through minimally invasive innovations, including robotic-assisted surgery, and its efforts to assure that this can become a standardized option for surgeons and patients for cleared procedures,” said Choi. “I look forward to working with surgeons, executives and the Intuitive team in South Korea to continue to expand patient access to robotic-assisted surgery, and the benefits it can offer.”

About Intuitive

Intuitive (Nasdaq: ISRG), headquartered in Sunnyvale, Calif., is a global technology leader in minimally invasive care and the pioneer of robotic-assisted surgery. As part of our mission, we believe that minimally invasive care is life-enhancing care. Through ingenuity and intelligent technology, we expand the potential of physicians to heal without constraints.

Intuitive brings more than two decades of leadership in robotic-assisted surgical technology and solutions to its offerings, and develops, manufactures, and markets the da Vinci® surgical system and the Ion™ endoluminal system (not available in South Korea).

About the da Vinci Surgical System

There are several models of the da Vinci surgical system. The da Vinci surgical systems are designed to help surgeons perform minimally invasive surgery. Da Vinci systems offer surgeons high-definition 3D vision, a magnified view, and robotic and computer assistance. They use specialized instrumentation, including a miniaturized surgical camera and wristed instruments (i.e., scissors, scalpels and forceps) that are designed to help with precise dissection and reconstruction deep inside the body.

Forward-Looking Statement

This press release contains forward-looking statements, including statements regarding the appointment of our general manager in Korea. These forward-looking statements reflect the best judgment of the Company’s 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, but not limited to, the following: the loss of key personnel, including Mr. Choi, or other changes in our executives or to our operating structure, and our ability to effectively transfer knowledge during periods of transition; and our ability to successfully implement our long-term growth strategy; and other risk factors under the heading “Risk Factors” in our report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2020, as updated by the Company’s other filing 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. The Company undertakes no obligation to publicly update or release any revisions to these forward-looking statements, except as required by law.

For more information, please visit the company’s website at

US/GLOBAL: Global Public Affairs
Intuitive Surgical

PN 1090393 Rev A 08/21

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Source: Intuitive Surgical, Inc.