FundamentalVR, a global leader in immersive medical technology through ground-breaking HapticVR™ technology, has announced the expansion of its executive team with the addition of four MedTech leaders. Bringing a wealth of experiences to their roles, Erin Kullgren, Michelle Halsne, Maayan Wenderow, and Dottie Barrett join the company as VPs of Growth, Sales, Marketing, and Strategic Data Commercialization respectively. The strategic investment hires follow an extensive period of growth for the company, fuelled by a $20 million Series B investment round announced in August 2022.
FundamentalVR created Fundamental Surgery, the world’s first HapticVR™ medical education platform – combining high-fidelity virtual reality (VR) with cutting-edge haptics. The platform allows users to experience the same, sights, sounds, and sensations they would in the real world. Deployed in over 30 countries, Fundamental Surgery has been instrumental in helping Life Science, Pharmaceutical, and Medical Device companies deploy medical innovations in disciplines from robotics, minimally invasive surgery, ophthalmology, and gene therapy among others.
While immersive medical technology is often male-dominated, FundamentalVR owes much of its success and development to female leaders, including its CTO Vicky Smalley. The addition of the four new executives now means 55% of FundamentalVR’s leadership is comprised of women.
Based in FundamentalVR’s US office locations, the four additional team members will help fuel the platform and the company’s continued expansion. Erin Kullgren, Vice President of Growth is responsible for working with individual clients to integrate the Fundamental Surgery simulation platform into their organizations. She is an experienced global training and education leader, who has deployed cross-functional collaborations to create and execute training programs across the Medical Device and Healthcare industries.
Prior to joining FundamentalVR, Erin was Director of Global Medical Education at Endologix, where she led the development and integration of the first Virtual Reality (VR) procedural training program for Endovascular Aortic Repair (EVAR) – for use in both internal and external training curricula. A pioneer of creative and innovative medical education programs, Erin brings both Life Science and medical institutional experience to her role at FundamentalVR, having held senior positions at Endologix, Abbott, and St Jude Medical.
Michelle Halsne joins FundamentalVR as Vice President of Sales, where she is tasked with expanding the company’s growing client list. Michelle has extensive experience developing successful go-to-market plans in MedTech and Medical Device companies, with a proven track record of accelerating the adoption of paradigm-shifting technologies in the US market. Prior to joining FundamentalVR, Michelle led sales efforts of innovative companies including 3D Systems and Proximie.
Leading marketing strategy and execution at FundamentalVR is Maayan Wenderow, who joins the company as Vice President of Marketing. Maayan is an accomplished marketeer with a proven track record in launching medical products. Previously, she held senior positions at leading Medical Equipment Manufacturers such as Baxter International, where she served as Associate Director of Marketing, and Cheetah Medical, where she was Director of Marketing.
As VP of Strategic Data Commercialization for FundamentalVR, Dottie Barrett will be focused on enhancing the adoption and extending the value of FundamentalVR products through the use of data, AI, and platforms. An immersive and digital health innovation strategist, Dottie has more than 20 years of experience in the medical sector working within Life Science and Healthcare companies. She has held leadership roles with companies including Insulet, UnitedHealth Group, and Abbott Laboratories.
“We are excited to welcome four amazing women to the FundamentalVR team and look forward to their contribution as we continue to expand in North America and Asia. Throughout 2022, we have continued to invest in our platform to transform how surgical skills are acquired in a scalable, low-cost and multiuser environment. Erin, Michelle, Maayan, and Dottie will be integral in helping FundamentalVR reach and better serve new customers to further that vision.”
Richard Vincent, CEO and Co-Founder of FundamentalVR
The proven efficacy of the Fundamental Surgery platform was also affirmed in September through a clinical trial published in The Annals of Medicine and Surgery. Conducted by Drs. Gani, Pickering, Sabri, Ellis, and Pucher, the trial aimed to evaluate the educational impact of integrated haptic feedback in an immersive VR bone drilling simulation on real-world benchtop performance. The study at St George’s University Hospital, London found that HapticVR™ technology within Fundamental Surgery improves surgical training learning curves and outcomes by over 40% in a number of surgical tasks.
“2022 has been a stellar year for the company as it has seen us secure additional funding, expand our partnerships, and now add additional top talent to our thriving team. The pace of innovation within immersive technologies is having a noticeable impact on the way medical education is advancing. It is helping bring new procedures and techniques to market and we are looking forward to what 2023 will bring.”
Richard Vincent, CEO and Co-Founder of FundamentalVR