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Smile Train and BioDigital Selected to Showcase Virtual Surgery Simulator in The Hive at TEDMED 2014

NEW YORK, July 25, 2014 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Smile Train and its technology partner BioDigital have been selected to showcase their Virtual Surgery Simulator among leading global health innovations in The Hive at TEDMED 2014, which will take place in Washington, D.C. at The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts.

"Smile Train is honored to be represented through our partnership with BioDigital alongside the talented community of innovators in health and medicine that TEDMED unites each year," said Smile Train CEO Susannah Schaefer. "The importance of technological innovation in global surgical practice cannot be overstated, and Smile Train is committed to being at the forefront of these efforts."

In partnership with BioDigital, a New York-based developer of bio-medical visualization systems, Smile Train created the first atlas of 3D, web-accessible, interactive cleft surgeries that offers doctors in the developing world training for the 21st century. The Simulator, which is online and completely free of charge, allows surgeons to interact with and test out the intricate procedures of cleft surgery from start-to-finish, and from any angle.

"Since its launch in 2013, the Simulator has been an essential training resource for performing safe, quality, and 100%-free cleft repairs," said Schaefer. "The Simulator has become a key to our sustainable training model, which empowers and trains local doctors in their own communities, anywhere in the world."

"BioDigital's collaboration with Smile Train stemmed from a need for high-quality cleft repair training more than a decade ago," said Aaron Oliker, director of 3D technologies for BioDigital. "The Virtual Surgery Simulator is paving the way in global surgical innovation and has since become a blueprint for other surgical specialties including breast reconstructive surgery, oncology and cardiothoracic surgery."

Assembled from hundreds of applications and nominations, The Hive is a community of startups and entrepreneurs powering transformation and innovation towards a healthier future. TEDMED is a global community dedicated to unlocking imagination in service of health and medicine.

Having operated in more than 85 countries, Smile Train offers training and support to local doctors so that they can provide cleft care to patients in their own communities. Smile Train's sustainable model empowers local doctors worldwide to provide surgery to 350+ children every day. In just 15 years, Smile Train has provided more than one million cleft repairs to patients who could not have otherwise afforded surgery.

Read the TEDMED announcement here.

About Smile Train
Smile Train is an international children's charity with a sustainable approach to a single, solvable problem: cleft lip and palate. Millions of children in developing countries with unrepaired clefts live in shame, but more importantly, have difficulty eating, breathing and speaking. Cleft repair surgery is simple, and the transformation is immediate. Smile Train's sustainable model provides training and funding to empower local doctors in 85+ developing countries to provide 100%-free cleft repair surgery in their own communities. To learn more about how Smile Train's sustainable approach means donations have both an immediate and long-term impact, please visit

About BioDigital
BioDigital is the leading developer of state-of-the-art 3D health visualization systems. Its flagship product, the BioDigital Human, is a 3D virtual body that empowers anyone to learn about the human body in a visual format that resembles life itself. This immersive and comprehensive platform enables users to study anatomy, disease, and treatments all in interactive 3D. The system has changed the way students, educators, patients, and healthcare providers learn and communicate about the human body, and with a robust API the potential applications are endless. The platform is constantly evolving, as our expert team of software engineers, 3D animators and scientists continue to improve the platform's content and features.

SOURCE Smile Train
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