Sylvain Poitras

Partner, geneva

Practice Experience

Sylvain Poitras is an international health-sector lawyer with a 25-year record of achievements in life sciences and healthcare. He provides specialized strategic, legal, contractual, regulatory and compliance (anti-kickback) support to health-tech players worldwide.

Sylvain teams up with clients to take them to their next success stage, acting as a virtual in-house counsel and executing mandates with a COO-like approach. His clients include mature firms, start-ups, investors, non-profit organizations and regulators. Sylvain is an active member of Swiss Medtech, the Swiss medical device industry association, itself a member of Medtech Europe, the Brussels-based European medtech industry association.

Acting in various past international legal leadership roles with large US health sector leaders  (Medtronic, Cardinal Health, IBM), Sylvain has led support to international business lines with annual sales of hundreds of millions of US dollars. He has been active in commercial operations at multiple levels, including business development, product development, sourcing, fundraising, multi-country product launches, marketing and sales strategies, product recalls and large scale legal and commercial negotiations with private and public sector players. 

Sylvain previously worked for the Geneva-based World Health Organization (WHO), the UN health agency, leading legal and regulatory reforms. In this capacity, he worked with officials from Ministries of Health in Europe, the Middle-East, Asia, and Africa.

Starting in 2010, Sylvain developed a number of university courses and case studies on the European medical technology oversight system (CE-marking, innovation, contracting practices, and compliance), which he has taught annually at two universities: the Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL), and the University of Neuchâtel, home to the Swiss Health Law Institute.  He has been a guest lecturer at the University of Geneva and the University of Montreal.


Certificate of Achievement, HMX Fundamentals - Pharmacology, Harvard Medical School, 2021

M.P.H. (Master of Public Health), Harvard University, 1991

LL.B. (Bachelor of Laws in Common Law – J.D. equivalent, Dalhousie University, Halifax, Canada, 1989

LL.B. (Bachelor of Laws in Civil Law – J.D. equivalent), University of Montreal, Canada, 1988


English and French

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