Christian Bellefleur - Quality Manager

Portrait of Christian Bellefleur, Quality Manager

Tell us about your background:

I come from the South Shore of Montreal. I spent my childhood and adolescence in the countryside, surrounded by fields, rivers and woodlands. I am both from the countryside and the city. As for my studies, I graduated from the 111th class of Polytechnique’s bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering specializing in robotics. In 1991, I did my master’s degree in mechanical engineering on geometric modeling of lumbar vertebrae alongside Jean Dansereau with whom I was a research associate since 1989, then with Carl-Éric Aubin.

My professional career began at Polytechnique Montréal where I was a lecturer in industrial CAD engineering. Then, I worked on a mechanical and software design project at Zimmer CAS (formerly OrthoSoft) for 2 years, which enabled me to participate in the development of a surgical navigator. My true interest is in research. For the past thirty years, I have worked on a number of 3D analysis projects: the effect of orthopedic corsets, real-time analysis in the operating room of corrective surgery for scoliosis using a measurement system directly on the patient, and software for 3D reconstruction, geometric modeling and the laboratory’s IT tools.

I have been Quality Manager at the TransMedTech Institute since 2018.

Can you explain what ‘Quality’ consists of?

Typically, a quality management system is used to describe what we do and how. It is also used to describe how we test, how we validate and where we store data. In a nutshell, it describes the work process.

What is your mission at iTMT?

A quality management system is a dynamic system. Therefore, it is important to ensure the consistency of the quality as the process evolves to reflect the ways of doing things. A quality management system must always be adapted to the work process, not the other way round. If the work process changes, so must the quality system.

What value does ISO 13485 certification give to the TransMedTech Institute and why is it important?

TransMedTech has ISO 13485 certification, adding value to the work we do with rigor and seriousness. Secondly, in our mission to implement innovative medical devices, being ISO 13485 certified ensures continuity with industry. Just like a relay race: quality acts as a relay stick between runners.

What are your values at work and in life in general?

I strive to be structured and consistent in everything I do. It is not always easy.

There are different ways to see success, for you, what would it be?

I believe that the feedback you get from your work shows how it is well executed. My vision of success is personal in the way that achievement is not necessarily something that needs to be demonstrated or announced to everyone.

« In our mission to implement innovative medical devices, being ISO 13485 certified ensures continuity with industry. Just like a relay race: quality acts as a relay stick between runners. »

Christian Bellefleur

Describe a day when you just had the best day of your life workwise. What was it about that day that made you so happy?

Concerning work, in addition to obtaining ISO 13485 certification, which was a major team effort, it was the accomplishment of a personal research project: a radiological image simulator. When I first obtained image simulations, I saw the tremendous potential of this tool. This type of image is now used in some of the laboratory’s technical training courses.

A person who inspires you and why?

There are many. My parents, for one. For their resilience, hard work and their interest in discovering Canada. Thanks to them, we travelled from Cape Breton to the far reaches of Abitibi, from Niagara Falls to the North Shore to Sept-Îles.

I would also like to mention my former directors Jean Dansereau and Jacques De Guise for their approach to research. Their vision is a horizontal one, where research associates can participate in joint decision-making and propose research topics.

One other person I am very fond of outside my personal and professional life is anthropologist Serge Bouchard, for his humanity and his perception of people. His sense of storytelling and history. He allowed me to understand where we come from as inhabitants of America. It was as if he had taken over from my parents in the discovery of America.

What book(s) would you recommend to read?

The writings and past broadcasts of the anthropologist Serge Bouchard.

Serge Bouchard helps us understand what America is all about and the people who shaped it: Aboriginals, French-Canadians, English, Scots, Irish. For example, it was through him that I discovered who Dr. Irma LeVasseur was, the first woman doctor in Quebec, and one of the founders of CHU Sainte-Justine.

The writings of paleontologist Stephen Jay Gould:

Source: Karim Zazoui Communication Services, Institut TransMedTech karim.zazoui@polymtl.ca