Jun 8, 2020 — 3 min read
Lunit today announced that their AI solution for chest x-ray analysis is now being used and tested in more than 10 countries for COVID-19 management, providing assistance in chest x-ray interpretation during patient triage and monitoring.
The firm had released the AI solution in late March, providing the algorithm online to help healthcare providers manage COVID-19. Since then, the firm had deployed its software onsite in more than 10 locations throughout different countries, including Italy, France, Portugal, Brazil, Indonesia, Panama, South Korea, and etc.
“Together with our partners, we took a step further from providing the solution online, now actively deploying the AI on-site within the hospitals,” said Brandon Suh, CEO of Lunit. “The actual use of AI within COVID-19 management varies on the independent hospital systems and workflow, but generally the software provides assistance in the interpretation of chest x-ray images during triaging symptomatic patients and monitoring admitted patients with COVID-19.”
Lunit is in partnership with Vizyon, a French teleradiology firm that specializes in providing a platform for AI software by connecting the technology to hospitals. Vizyon is using Lunit AI in analyzing the images they receive from their clients.
“During patient triage, Lunit INSIGHT CXR developed for COVID-19 can accelerate the decision-making of patients with symptoms while awaiting PCR results,” says Dr. Pierre Durand of Vizyon. When the symptomatic patient shows up to a hospital, the patient is tested with both PCR and AI-assisted chest x-ray, with the latter providing an analysis result in less than 5 minutes.
“The doctor, upon reviewing the analysis made by AI, can promptly decide whether to send the patient back home or to the Emergency Hospital, depending on the severity. PCR results generally take six to 24 hours, risking a longer window of contamination while awaiting results, a longer gap of treatment, and a possible hospital overload,” Dr. Durand added.
Brazil was one of the early adopters of the solution, installed and tested at more than 11 hospitals including PreventSenior, one of the largest hospital networks in Brazil with 8 locations throughout the metropolitan region of Sao Paulo. Now having analyzed more than 30,000 chest x-ray images of COVID-19 cases in the last two months, a physician at PreventSenior says that “Lunit INSIGHT CXR seems to provide great help, especially for patient triage,” as the hospital is overflowing with patients while the number of radiologists remains limited.
In Italy, a country that saw large numbers of COVID-19 cases, Lunit AI is being used in Vimercate hospital, deployed through the company’s partnership with Fujifilm. The COVID-19 crisis has brought a need to improve workflow in the hospital, by easing the burden of reading a mass amount of exams. The hospital is based in Lombardia, Italy, and takes around 160,000 radiology exams in a year with 17 radiologists and 19 technicians.
AI findings are integrated into the Fujifilm Synapse platform which Vimercate hospital uses for reading radiologic images. According to the hospital, Lunit INSIGHT is used for every chest x-ray analysis, including emergency room patients with respiratory symptoms and patients with COVID-19. It is also used to examine a discharging patient with no symptoms, and to evaluate the feasibility of anesthesia prior to a surgical operation.
The original algorithm of Lunit INSIGHT CXR detects 10 findings from chest x-ray images including consolidation, nodule, pneumothorax, and more. It is CE marked and clinically available in Europe.
“Among the many hospitals we have been in touch with, many of them were experiencing frustrations from limited PCR tests and/or a lack of manpower and resources,” says Minhong Jang, Chief Business Officer at Lunit. “In hopes of sharing the burden, we are seeking more health facilities where we can provide assistance with advanced technology. We welcome you to learn more about our solution and reach out to better manage the current crisis."
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