AI in medical imaging

Helping medical imaging professionals to accomplish more

Augment workflows, reviews, and reporting through artificial intelligence—seamlessly integrated with your existing enterprise imaging solution

The potential for artificial intelligence (AI) to improve performance and productivity in diagnostic imaging is tremendous. As it moves beyond the hype, AI is being increasingly adopted in clinical practice. AI in medical imaging is here to stay.

Whether applied to radiology, pathology, cardiology, or any other diagnostic profession, AI should improve accuracy and efficiency for end users. When targeting everyday clinical use cases, integration into existing workflows is key—as is fast and secure access to best-of-breed AI technology. Sectra helps healthcare providers adopt AI in clinical practice, which ultimately translates into better and more effective patient care.

Successful workflow integration of AI will be of pivotal importance for clinical acceptance.

Daniel Forsberg, Senior Research Scientist and Product Owner Radiology AI at Sectra

New technology needs to work alongside existing systems, to ensure both safety and efficiency. Back-end integrations are essential for ensuring a clear and reliable workflow. […] A reliable workflow is even more important when multiple organisations are involved in caring for people.

From “A Buyer’s Checklist for AI in Health and Care”, published in May 2020 by the NHSX

Sectra’s approach to supporting AI adoption

Seamless integration into existing diagnostic workflows

Your existing diagnostic viewer is the starting point. Tight integration based on industry standards is key to adopting and leveraging the full potential of AI in daily practice. Properly integrated AI tools reduce time spent on repetitive and time-consuming tasks. AI-driven workflows help you prioritize and triage cases, increase diagnostic quality, and improve consistency and standardization in reporting.

AI across multiple clinical disciplines

Innovation driven by AI technology reaches far beyond the radiology department. Your diagnostic viewer, whether applied to radiology, breast imaging, pathology, cardiology—or any other clinical specialty—is the interface that AI needs to be seamlessly integrated into. This integration must always be driven by standards that permit adopting the latest innovations from the industry and easy exchange of AI applications so as to prevent lock-in.

Access to best-of-breed AI applications

Sectra has a long tradition of providing open platforms that external vendors and researchers can easily integrate with. By using industry standards and open APIs, we make it easy to tailor the diagnostic viewer to your needs and to add applications that provide workflow and user efficiencies. We help you integrate and process results from external vendors and utilize Sectra’s own AI applications, all in a single integrated solution. We are forming an ecosystem of certified applications together with our strong partner network of AI vendors to improve efficiency and quality, thus providing a unified entry point to a “best-of-breed” portfolio.

The range of available applications can assist you not only in diagnostics—such as detection, quantification, and classification—but also in workflow orchestration including triage, examination, and resource allocation. Moreover, the applications can assist with reporting, for instance pre-populating structured reports with measurements and comparisons. You can start with a few applications and expand use gradually. Business cases become optimal with full AI coverage of the workflow, making it possible to monitor and validate its end-to-end impact on efficiency and quality improvements.

Unified technical infrastructure to deploy and host applications

Running multiple applications in a hospital environment, with each of them demanding its own integrations and specifications, is a challenge on its own. Safely and efficiently adopting AI in clinical practice and routine diagnostics requires an orchestrating “middle layer”. Your imaging system should connect to a vendor-neutral platform—a marketplace—that offers a wide range of quality-approved AI applications from many different vendors, ensures proper integration with the entire workflow, and offers one contracting party. A single point of coordination to access a best-of-breed portfolio of AI applications facilitates faster adoption in daily practice and creates peace of mind for business administrators and purchasing experts.

We are currently developing the Sectra Amplifier Marketplace to facilitate the deployment and use of AI applications in medical imaging. More information will follow in the autumn of 2020.

Every time the AI component catches your attention without contributing value, it’s instead degrading the workflow. AI has enormous potential to assist with narrow tasks but only if it’s carefully put into the workflow context. ‘Unremarkability’ is something to strive for. At least if you’re interested in putting AI to actual use in healthcare.

Dr. Claes Lundström, Research Director at Sectra and Director of the Swedish AIDA research project

The algorithm itself is not of particular value as such—there will be fifty ways to do lung nodules—what matters more is how it is integrated into the rad workflow and how the radiologists interact with it.

Dr. Tarang Sheth, Radiologist at Trillium Health Partners

AI research at Sectra—today’s innovation with tomorrow’s technology

Innovation is part of Sectra’s identity and AI in diagnostic imaging is an underlying theme in much of the work of our in-house research department. Our team of scientists is working on solutions that combine AI and visualization, focusing on how physicians control and adjust computer-generated results. Among other projects, Sectra is one of the main participants in the Swedish initiatives AIDA (Analytic Imaging Diagnostics Arena) and WASP (Wallenberg AI, Autonomous Systems and Software Program). Research projects are often conducted in partnerships with universities, hospitals, and strategic partners around the world.

Related reading and resources

Sectra AI Seminar 2020: AI in every hospital

In January 2020, Sectra in the Netherlands together with UMC Utrecht arranged an AI seminar aiming to give hospitals an overview of what is currently available and what they need to do to implement AI applications into clinical practice.

Sectra AI Clinical Showcase 2019: Artificial Intelligence in the Clinical Environment

In April 2019, Sectra in the UK arranged a clinical showcase event in London. Delegates investigated where AI in healthcare is now, where it is headed, and the impact the use of AI will have on patient care and diagnosis across a range of disciplines.

View all videos from the event — click here

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