News | Artificial Intelligence | March 08, 2018

Nuance and Partners HealthCare Collaborate to Create AI Marketplace for Diagnostic Imaging

Collaboration focused on optimizing the development, clinical validation and usability of practical artificial intelligence applications

March 8, 2018 — Nuance Communications Inc. announced the signing of a multi-year strategic agreement with Partners HealthCare at the 2018 Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society annual meeting (HIMSS18), March 5-9 in Las Vegas. The two organizations will optimize the process for rapid development, validation and utilization of artificial intelligence (AI) for radiologists at the point of care, and Nuance intends to make the new algorithms available through the Nuance AI Marketplace for Diagnostic Imaging. The collaboration will be executed through the recently formed Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) and Brigham and Women’s Hospital (BWH) Center for Clinical Data Science (CCDS) and will focus on improving radiologists’ efficiency and report quality, as well as patient clinical outcomes.

Nuance and Partners Healthcare will work together, and with other key supporters of the Nuance AI Marketplace for Diagnostic Imaging including NVIDIA and the American College of Radiology. The collective will continue to foster the democratization of imaging AI, with an emphasis on automating many of the mundane and repetitive tasks radiologists face daily. The AI Marketplace is an open platform for developers, data scientists and radiologists to accelerate the development, deployment and adoption of AI for medical imaging. The Marketplace will leverage the large number of radiologists in the U.S. already using Nuance’s PowerScribe radiology reporting and PowerShare image exchange network. Specifically, technology partners can now seamlessly deploy their algorithms into Nuance’s cloud-based PowerShare Network and users can easily select them through the PowerScribe radiology reporting platform. This enables the algorithms to be accessed within a radiologist’s native workflow, eliminating the need to buy new reporting or image sharing systems.

Accessibility and efficiency are major drivers of the work taking place at the CCDS. "We spend a lot of energy thinking about how to develop and effectively deliver tools into the clinical workflow — starting upstream with designing smarter imaging modalities to downstream automation of reporting workflows" said Mark Michalski, M.D., executive director of the CCDS. "As AI toolsets are increasingly democratized, scaling the delivery and integration of these tools is likely to represent a barrier to broad adoption." Through investment in the CCDS, MGH and BWH leadership is actively building the technical capabilities and industry relationships needed to lower these barriers and help bring solutions to market.

“For AI algorithms to be useful to radiologists and patients, it is critical that they are both clinically validated and accessible through the existing reporting workflow,” said Keith Dreyer, DO, Ph.D., FACR, FSIIM, chief data science officer, Partners HealthCare. “Through this collaboration with Nuance, radiologists will be able to access and leverage validated AI and deep learning algorithms without leaving their preferred workflow. Partnerships like this are a game changer given the time savings, increases in productivity and improved quality outcomes enabled for radiology staff.”

Nuance also released a whitepaper on the AI Marketplace, “AI Access for All: The power and promise of AI for radiology," that is available for download.

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