Abbott continues to bring forward new innovations to help people live their best lives.

Abbott Wins Innovation Award

Oct 28 2015

The Chicago Innovation Awards have honored Abbott with a record 7th award for healthcare innovation.

For many years, Abbott has remained a significant force in innovation, discovering and developing new healthcare products and technologies that have helped generations of people to live their best lives. Most recently, Abbott was recognized with another Chicago Innovation Award.

Abbott innovation goes way back to 1888, when 30-year-old Dr. Wallace C. Abbott, a practicing Chicago physician and drug store proprietor, founded the company. Dr. Abbott’s innovation was revolutionary: he developed tiny pills that allowed more consistent and effective medicinal dosages for patients.

This history of innovation continues today. Abbott received a Chicago Innovation Award for the MitraClip® System, a first-of-its-kind, catheter-based device that has transformed the treatment of certain kinds of mitral regurgitation (MR) for people who are too frail for open-heart surgery or those who are not candidates for surgery.

Every year since 2002, the Chicago Innovation Awards recognizes businesses, nonprofits, and government organizations that develop the year’s most innovative new products and services. Abbott has received more Chicago Innovation Awards – seven – than any other company.

Often referred to as a leaky heart valve, MR is a dangerous condition that occurs when blood flows backward through the heart’s mitral valve. Because the heart must work harder to push blood through the body, patients experience fatigue, shortness of breath, increased vulnerability to heart failure and potentially, death.

The MitraClip device, which achieved FDA approval in 2013, is placed in the heart through a blood vessel in the leg – thus avoiding open-heart surgery. Once in position, the MitraClip device pinches, or clips, the leaky valve closed, keeping the blood from flowing backward and easing the strain on the heart.

Watch an animation of the procedure.

Clinical data show that treatment with the MitraClip device reduces the severity of MR, improves physical health and vitality, and decreases recovery time compared to open-heart surgery. To date, the system has been used to treat more than 25,000 people in 40 countries. Find a heart center offering treatment with the MitraClip device.

Ted E. Feldman, M.D., of NorthShore University HealthSystem located in the Chicago area, performed the very first U.S. implant of the device in 2003, and served as the principal investigator of the clinical trial that led to U.S. FDA approval of the device.

"The MitraClip device is a true breakthrough that has really changed the treatment of MR. For the first time, we are able to offer a minimally invasive therapy for many patients who did not have any option in the past. In our experience, many people go from bed rest back to normal daily activities after only a few days," Dr. Feldman said. "It has been extremely gratifying to be involved in the evolution of MitraClip from the very beginning and to see it now in use to improve the lives of thousands of people around the world."

"At Abbott, we are on a mission to help people live their best lives, and innovation is at the center of everything we do," said Robert Ford, executive vice president, Medical Devices, Abbott. "We are honored to be recognized with the Chicago Innovation Award for MitraClip – a first-of-its-kind device that resulted from the ongoing commitment of our employees to develop products that transform people's lives."

Abbott's previous Chicago Innovation Award-winning advances include:

  • ARCHITECT® HIV Ag/Ab Combo Test (2010)
  • Similac® SimplePac® container (2009)
  • XIENCE V Everolimus Eluting Coronary Stent System (2008)
  • Abbott m2000 molecular diagnostic instrument in combination with the RealTime® HIV-1 viral load test (2007)
  • PathVysion® breast cancer test (2005)
  • HUMIRA®, a biologic treatment for certain immunological diseases (2003)*

In addition to the seven Chicago Innovation Awards, Miles D. White, Abbott's chairman and chief executive officer, also was recognized with the organization's Visionary Award in 2011.

For Important Safety Information about the MitraClip device, click here:

* HUMIRA is no longer an Abbott product; for more information, visit


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