April 17, 2018 — The Dubai Health Authority (DHA) announced the preliminary results of a chest X-ray artificial intelligence (AI) algorithm deployed across DHA medical fitness centers (MFCs). The collaboration is the first validation of Agfa Healthcare’s Augmented Intelligence (AI) in the United Arab Emirates (UAE).
The partners began reviewing the use of artificial intelligence-enabled workflows in radiology with Agfa more than two years ago. Upon completion of phase one of onsite validation early January 2018, and on analysis of preliminary data, the algorithm was able to correctly identify lung diseases in chest X-rays approximately 90 percent of the time. Phase two results in March 2018 showed further improved sensitivity to 95 percent. Anonymized chest X-ray samples were provided by DHA to Agfa.
As part of this joint collaborative effort, Agfa in partnership with the VRVis Center for Virtual Reality and Visualization in Vienna, Austria, began developing machine learning-enabled detection of abnormal chest X-ray findings. The algorithm processed approximately 4,900 chest X-rays, and two DHA MFC radiologists reviewed the findings detected by the AI algorithm. The two radiologists provided feedback via an AI-enabled workflow if they agreed or disagreed with the algorithm findings.
His Excellency Humaid Al Qutami, chairman of the board and director-general of the Dubai Health Authority, said, “In line with the vision of our leaders and in line with the Dubai Health Strategy 2016 -2021, we are keen to foster the use of technology in the health sector to improve efficiencies, enhance healthcare management and overall workflows, and most importantly to further improve patient-centric care. Utilization of AI in the health sector is also in line with the UAE Strategy for Artificial Intelligence. The DHA decided to use AI for X-ray imaging across medical fitness centers because of the scale of the service and the fact that it will greatly enhance work efficiencies and will lead to optimum utilization of manpower. The move will have a significant positive impact on the overall medical fitness system.”
The total number of people who visited the DHA run medical fitness centers during 2017 for new and renewal visas were 2,126,066. Medical fitness testing is a mandatory requirement for all expats in the UAE. It is required for a residency, employment or education visa. DHA has 20 medical fitness centers across the emirate for issuance and renewal of visas. DHA will implement this technology across select medical fitness centers to further access the feasibility prior to expanding this technology across all its medical fitness centers.
Mohammad Al Redha, M.D., director of The Executive Office for Organizational Transformation at the DHA, said, "The results are very promising. We will work together to establish an enterprise imaging strategy for the DHA to enable multi-speciality medical imaging consolidation. DHA will establish a framework of artificial intelligence workflow to augment radiology imaging, including in the area of detecting diseases, and we will collaborate to validate machine-learning algorithms in development.”
Maisa Al Bustani, director of medical fitness at the DHA, said that based on the preliminary results and with the task-based rules automation capabilities of Agfa HealthCare's Enterprise Imaging solution, DHA is establishing a differentiated approach on AI by identifying key performance indicators (KPIs). She said the DHA perceives the following benefits:
- Workflow automation for radiologists - Ability to focus on suspected chest X-rays faster instead of manual searching;
- Automated report templates;
- Improved turn-around times - Expand the scope of chest X-ray screening program to add more volume and capacity; and
- Improved patient satisfaction by providing fast results and reports.
She added that the move will benefit a vast number of individuals on a day-to-day basis and revolutionize the way in which radiology imaging is carried out.
The validation is currently in progress at one of the DHA-run MFCs in Dubai. Agfa and DHA will continue the validation process to further improve the accuracy of AI algorithm detection.
For more information: www.agfahealthcare.com