Physician and successful inventor John Fisher was recently interviewed. He discussed how he got started and the opportunities available for physician inventors. John will be speaking at the SEAK Nation Non Clinical Careers Conference to be held on October 25-26, 2014 in Chicago, IL.

Q. Dr. Fisher, why did you get interested in physician inventing? 

By accident.  I became friends through my son’s soccer team with a biomedical engineer.

Q. How did you get started? 

We came up with a few ideas together and filed for patents.  We then were able to raise money from an angel investor who became a partner.

Q. Can physicians pursue this while still practicing clinical medicine?

Absolutely.  The key component is a good idea and assembling the right team to execute the day to day tasks needed to achieve commercialization. The physician acts more as a consultant involved in making decisions and can be involved in meetings as needed by phone or in person.  It does however require additional work on top of an already busy schedule.

Q. What kind of a difference can physicians make with physician inventions? 

They can advance medicine, help improve lives, reduce complications and innovate new procedures.  Physicians have the advantage of really understanding how a new device can solve an unmet clinical need.

The Physician Inventor: How to Enter the Field While Keeping Your Day Job

John Fisher, MD

Dr. Fisher will explain how to take your idea for a medical device or other invention and patent, raise funds, assemble the right team, test and develop, gain FDA clearance, market and sell directly to physician customers, and achieve an exit by selling out to a large device company. He will demonstrate how this can be achieved while still keeping your day job.

John Fisher, MD is an interventional radiologist in Clearwater, Florida. He is the CEO of Biopsy Sciences. After founding the company in 2001 Dr. Fisher has navigated the company to become a standalone, successful medical device company. With angel seed money of $ 500,000 and several NIH SBIR phase 1 and phase 2 grants Dr. Fisher and his team were able to develop, patent, file for regulatory clearance and ultimately sell the VMark breast biopsy site marker, Maxi-Cell biopsy needle and the Bio-SEAL lung biopsy site sealant to Angiotech for $19 million in 2007 while completing the SBIR CAP Larta program in California. Following that acquisition the company turned its focus to commercialize the HydroMARK breast biopsy site marker which is now sold in the U.S. and worldwide in over 30 countries through a network of distributors.