Steve Brown

Project Manager, LPE Medical Ltd

Q: What made you choose your career in orthopaedics?

A: Prior to joining LPE Medical I worked for a global corporation that predominantly operated within the semi-conductor industry. It was here where I undertook a 4-year engineering apprenticeship, whilst also being given the opportunity to study toward my academic accreditations. During this time I was assigned to training with professional engineers, and was given the freedom to develop a number of skills and awareness of processes within the modern industry. On successful completion of the apprenticeship, I became involved with production operations and project planning. When the opportunity arose to work for LPE Medical I was all too happy to join the team.

Q: What is your role at LPE Medical?

A: LPE Medical over the past number of years has developed the project management division of the business. Much of the success that LPE Medical enjoys today is due to the way that our project management practices have helped our customers achieve realisation of a fully validated and approved product. In more recent years new and existing project business grew to the point that additional assistance was required, therefore I joined the company as Project Manager in August 2005. At LPE Medical we have the advantage of a very capable and skilled team, I liaise closely with customers, suppliers, service providers and colleagues to co-ordinate various stages of orthopaedic device development, from technical consultancy, process and product validation, packaging development and validation, to realisation of product.

Q: How does LPE Medical go about developing new projects?

A: It is essential for any project that LPE Medical forms close working relationships with customers. In early stages of development our staff collaborates with customers and regulatory advisors to ensure that requirements and standards are defined and met throughout every stage of a project. Product tooling is developed and custom work holding requirements are designed in order to maximise accuracy and repeatability during the manufacturing process. Product testing and validation is completed on behalf of the customer. Bespoke packaging is developed and various validation exercises undertaken to prove the concept. For every process our Project Management and Quality Assurance staff provide information to ensure that the customer has the quantitative, statistical and/or validation data required to demonstrate compliance with standards and specifications. The ability to correspond with the customer and develop a natural engineering working relationship is key for LPE Medical’s success with any new medical device; this relationship permits development to flow more effortlessly, therefore allowing the focus to remain on the project.

Q: What’s the advantage of using LPE Medical for project development?

A: Effective project management from an accomplished team allows LPE Medical to offer a far higher level of service than the traditional sub contract-manufacturing suppliers. Within the company are years of experience in the orthopaedic industry at every stage of the process, so for projects that require a ‘total supply solution’ including project validations, it means the customer can take real advantage of LPE Medical’s knowledge. Not only do we offer these valuable services, but also LPE Medical routinely operates to an exceptionally high level of quality and internal standards, ensuring attention to detail and customer focus is always a top priority. LPE Medical, in the last 12 months, has moved into a first class purpose built facility, thus enabling the company to incorporate new technologies to benefit customer needs. Any potential customer can be assured that by working with LPE Medical they will receive a quality product, with flexible support as we can draw from our internal resources, reputation and contacts within the industry to aid with cost and leadtime reductions.

Q: Does LPE work closely with surgeons or with other medical device companies?

A: As subcontractors, LPE Medical is certainly familiar with working with surgeons and Medical Device companies and therefore the expectations to obtain a conforming product. LPE Medical has recently been involved with a number of innovative projects, during which time our team has worked with both individual surgeons and OEM’s to tailor the project to the exact requirements specified. Many Surgeons and OEM’s are happy to have taken advantage of the services provided by LPE Medical, allowing us the opportunity to organise and co-ordinate the project on behalf of our customer. In addition to development projects LPE Medical has also manufactured and supplied a number of Custom devices and instrumentation concepts as requested by surgeons and OEM’s. LPE Medical welcomes the opportunity to work with both surgeons and medical device companies as this type of collaboration ensures the end user of the device is actively involved with all the parties contributing to the success of any project.

Q: How do you see the future for LPE Medical?

A: LPE Medical has grown significantly year on year and from my position in the company I get an insight into future customer requirements and hear first hand the reputation that LPE Medical has within the industry. From the new projects that have been developed in the last year alone and the ever-broadening relationships we have with our existing customers, I can see LPE Medical going from strength to strength. New business will continue to grow due to the investment in the new facility, the new technology, and commitment from staff striving to carry the company forward. LPE Medical should be a natural first choice for any customer looking to source a compliant device.

Q: Does LPE Medical have any plans for new project and expansion in the future?

A: At present, 2007 is set to be another busy year for LPE Medical; we have a number of projects for OEM’s lined up which should generate a lot of interest when released to the market. We are already looking into additional and new technology to assist in the realisation of innovative products for various customers. If the business continues to grow at the rate already experienced, certainly LPE Medical has the resources to expand our capability further throughout all areas of the company.