The Foundation is pleased to welcome Arik Hananel, MD as its new Scientific and Medical Director. Hananel was involved in the early stages of commercializing MR-guided focused ultrasound at device pioneer InSightec, Ltd. and has more than 12 years of research and development experience with the technology.
The pivotal positions Hananel held at InSightec give him a unique vantage point for advancing the Foundation’s mission: he is familiar with the clinical research funded by the Foundation, understands how the technology is evolving and has long-standing relationships with the key stakeholders in the field.
“We are excited about the leadership role that Dr. Hananel will play at the Foundation. His in-depth knowledge of many facets of MR-guided focused ultrasound will be invaluable in helping to facilitate the adoption of this game-changing technology,” says Foundation Chairman Neal F. Kassell, MD.
Hananel’s primary responsibilities will be overseeing research activities, including pre-clinical studies and clinical trials, and representing the Foundation at meetings and symposia.
Hananel is passionate about accelerating the adoption of MR-guided focused ultrasound. “It can change medicine in a way that will benefit almost every patient,” he observes. “I remember seeing the first uterine fibroid treatments, and thinking about the contrast of the long recovery processes involved in other, more invasive procedures. I would watch a woman get treated with MR-guided focused ultrasound. Thirty-minutes later, I would be sitting with her, talking and joking. It continues to amaze me, even today.
“Once you see a patient receive the treatment, it changes your perspective completely. You need to see the person and not the procedure,” he says.
This enthusiasm for patients is natural to Hananel. Though his career has been in the corporate world, he trained as a clinical MD and almost became a pediatrician. However, as he says, “fate intervened” when he accepted a position at InSightec.
He is pleased that his new post at the Foundation will allow him to combine his medical degree with his two other degrees: a Bachelor’s of Computer Science and an Executive MBA. Aside from the great career fit, he considers the opportunity to be a personal “adventure.” Hananel, his wife, and three boys – ages 6, 11 and 14 – are relocating from their native Israel to Charlottesville, Virginia for the next chapter of their lives.
Written by Ellen C., McKenna