For The Record with Justin Noznesky, Senior Vice President of Marketing and Business Development, AtriCure

Justin Noznesky joined the company in January 2014. He is responsible for global marketing activities, health economics, mergers, acquisitions and business partnerships.  Prior to joining AtriCure, Mr. Noznesky served as Vice President of Marketing and Business Development at Vital Images, Inc., a subsidiary of Toshiba Medical Systems Corporation. Prior to Vital Images, Mr. Noznesky worked at UnitedHealth Group in Corporate Finance, and at Arthur Andersen as a senior auditor.  Mr. Noznesky earned a B.A. from Bethel University in St. Paul, Minnesota.

What does AtriCure do?

AtriCure provides innovative technologies for the treatment of Atrial Fibrillation (Afib) and related conditions, which affect more than 33 million people worldwide. Electrophysiologists and cardiothoracic surgeons around the globe use AtriCure technologies for the treatment of Afib and reduction of Afib related complications. AtriCure’s Isolator® Synergy™ Ablation System is the first and only medical device to receive FDA approval for the treatment of persistent Afib. AtriCure’s AtriClip® Left Atrial Appendage Exclusion System products are the most widely sold left atrial appendage management devices worldwide.

How big of a health issue is Afib?

Afib is an irregular heartbeat. Normally, the heart contracts and then relaxes in a regular rhythm, moving blood from the upper chambers (atria) into the ventricles. In Afib, the atria beat irregularly instead of in a steady pattern. Due to this irregularity, people with atrial fibrillation are at a higher risk of blood clots, heart failure, stroke, and other heart-related complications.

Key Facts:

  • 33 million people worldwide suffer from Afib
  • 1.2 million people are diagnosed with Afib every year in the U.S. alone
  • 1 in 4 adults over 40 will develop Afib in their lifetime
  • People with Afib are 5x more likely to suffer a stroke
  • By 2030, the number of Americans suffering from Afib will be 12.1 million

What are the biggest impediments to improved treatment for Afib patients and what is AtriCure doing about it?

One of the biggest issues with improving treatment is awareness of treatment options. While outcomes for ablation therapies have improved over the past 20 years, the fact remains that many of the patients who have Afib and are eligible for ablation therapies do not get treated. As an example, there are approximately 300,000 cardiac surgeries annually in the United States. Of those patients, approximately 30% have pre-operative Afib (~90,000 patients annually). Of those patients that are undergoing cardiac surgery and have Afib, less than 30% receive an ablation.

To address the undertreatment paradigm, AtriCure invests across the business to support what we call our three pillars: Innovation, Clinical Science, and Education. From an innovation perspective, we make significant investments in new product and therapy development. We also invest significantly in clinical science initiatives to support robust data gathering and analysis on outcomes associated with the use of our devices. And lastly, we have a highly differentiated and unique set of physician training programs that are focused on ensuring we adequately train our customers on the safe and effective use of our devices.

What does the acquisition of SentreHEART mean for AtriCure?

The strategic rationale for the acquisition was focused in three areas:

  • Direct entry into the electrophysiology market: Historically, all of AtriCure’s products were used by cardiac surgeons; SentreHEART’s Lariat® device is used by electrophysiologists.
  • Broadening clinical evidence in the persistent and long-standing persistent Afib market: With the acquisition, AtriCure now has three clinical trials focused on patients with more advanced forms of Afib.
  • Future boost to our already robust left atrial appendage management business: Once the aMAZE™ IDE clinical trial is completed, we believe this will be an accelerant to our left atrial appendage management business.

AtriCure is growing, including hiring in Medical Alley. What makes AtriCure a great place to work?

AtriCure is a highly differentiated and unique cardiovascular medical device company. Since the company’s founding in the early 2000s, we have aligned ourselves around achieving our mission of being passionately focused on reducing the global Afib epidemic, and healing the lives of those affected. We now have over 700 employees worldwide, including a growing office of nearly 60 people in Minnetonka, all of whom are dedicated to our mission.

In order to achieve this mission, our company and our culture is aligned around our three core values: Patients, People, and Partners.

PATIENTS

Our first responsibility is to put patients first. We lead rigorous clinical science to determine the safest, most effective approaches and treatments. Our commitment to education generates consistent, predictable practices and standards of care. We undertake relentless innovation to reveal new ideas that improve the experience of providers and supports the care they deliver to each patient.

PEOPLE

Our people act with unwavering integrity and transparency in all we do. While honoring the dignity of each person, we foster collaboration to achieve excellence across all areas. We sustain a humble culture of gratitude for each other and the good that we can bring to the world.

PARTNERS

We are committed to delivering the highest quality and most efficient solutions to benefit our partners, including care providers, customers, and shareholders. We strive to understand their needs and to offer the products, services, and business value that meet those needs.

Welcome to Medical Alley Association’s For The Record interview series! Join us as we sit down with innovators in the delivery, payment, technology, and policy industries, giving us – and in turn, you – access to diverse perspectives on how healthcare is changing and what lies ahead.

Medical Alley is the global epicenter of health innovation and care; For The Record, is meant to share insights and spark discussion. If you have a perspective on the future of healthcare, feel free to share it by reaching out to Jamie Oyen, Marketing Manager at joyen@medicalalley.org

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