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The company uses software to help radiologists identify illnesses from CT scans, including COVID
Steven Loeb and Bambi Francisco interview Elad Walach, co-founder and CEO of Aidoc, a Tel Aviv-based software-support tool that helps radiologists identify illnesses from CT scans, including COVID, that has raised $60 million.
For these digital health podcasts, our goal is to also understand these three high-level questions: How are we empowering the consumer? Are we creating productivity that also allows us to see overall economic costs go down? How is this advancement changing the role of the doctor?
Highlights from the interview:
- In recent years, the number of medical images, including CTs, X-rays and MRIs, has been steadily increasing because the images are getting better and you can get more data from them. At the same time, there wasn't an increase in radiologists. In fact, on average, radiologists have two seconds to look at an image and interpret them.
- Aidoc's aim is to leverage that data and create insights using artificial intelligence. Its AI layer runs in the background on every medical imaging exam, searching for critical findings, highlighting them for the radiologist.
- The value of the platform is less to the radiologist but it's more for the hospital, because it can reach the patient faster and give them the correct treatment and reduce the length of stay, and to the patient in reducing their healthcare costs. One hospital showed roughly an hour of reduction in length of stay.
- The vast majority of hospitals don't have running AI, and Aidoc is typically their first AI initiative. The reason is that it's difficult to create a comprehensive set of tools; radiology is a broad discipline, and just picking one might have value but it's challenging to integrate into clinical workflows. Aidoc can create a lot of solutions very quickly; it has the most number of FDA clearances in its space.
- Earlier this year, the company was given permission by the FDA to detect COVID-19 in CT images, with an accuracy rate of 92 percent, looking for ground-glass opacity (GGO). The use case is a patient who comes in without suspicion of COVID but with belly pain, for example. When they are getting scanned, Aidoc's algorithm picks up the signs of COVID and flags them to get tested.
- Going forward, Aidoc hopes to be part of the basic workflow for any radiologist, and be running on every exam in the world. The company also wants to help radiologists see things that they can't see with the naked eye today and increase the need for radiology services.
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