Surgical Innovation Program

Our mission is to transform surgical care by fostering, supporting and accelerating innovation.

We do this by:

  • Supporting clinicians and other healthcare professionals within the Department of Surgery throughout the commercialization process.
  • Implementing programs that provide education on the innovation process and bring together interdisciplinary teams to develop technological solutions to unmet clinical needs.
  • Building strategic industry and academic partnerships to support technology development and adoption of cutting-edge innovations within the department.
  • Working cross-departmentally to facilitate collaborations and coalesce and leverage innovation resources and expertise.


Commercialization Support:

  • Feedback on ideas for unmet clinical needs or technology solutions.
  • Assistance navigating the commercialization process at OHSU and connecting with available resources.
  • In-depth market research support - Market Research Lab.
  • Prototype development support - assistance connecting with engineers and fabrication resources.
  • Business planning support - assistance connecting with business mentors with appropriate domain expertise.
  • Grant funding support - BIP, SBIR/STTR, Phase 0, foundation.
  • Investor funding support - Pitch development, investor connections, mentor matching.

Collaborations and Strategic Partnerships:

  • Industry partnership facilitation - Joint technology development, sponsored research, startup partners.
  • Academic partnership facilitation - Identifying collaborators, joint technology development.


Sarah Biber, Ph.D., Innovation Manager

Sarah Biber, Ph.D., has been actively engaged in the healthcare innovation and research sectors over the past 15 years and has a special interest in advancing medical device, diagnostic, digital health, and precision medicine technologies. She has just started her new role as Innovation Manager within the Department of Surgery at OHSU and the Oregon Clinical and Translational Research Institute (OCTRI), and is working to develop new programs, strategic partnerships, and processes to further foster, support, and accelerate innovation.

In addition to promoting surgical innovation, she is focused on collaboratively building cross-departmental and OHSU-wide innovation initiatives. Dr. Biber previously served as the Assistant Director for NIH’s National Center for Data to Health (CD2H), based out of OCTRI at OHSU. While at the CD2H, she played a critical role in launching the center and co-led initiatives to facilitate informatics innovation, data sharing, software development, and collaboration across the Clinical Translational Science Awards Program.

Prior to her CD2H role, Dr. Biber was Entrepreneurial Program Director at the Oregon Bioscience Incubator where she helped grow the incubator three-fold and spearheaded statewide programs and partnerships to support entrepreneurs and startups. During this time she also served as chair of the Startup Resource Workgroup for the Portland Innovation Quadrant and co-founded Accelerate Biotech and Digital Health PDX. Dr. Biber previously served on the board of Women in Science PDX and is passionate about promoting women and other underrepresented groups in STEM.