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AI tool which analysed COVID-19 in Wuhan available to NHS – Med-Tech Innovation

Axial AI, an AI software developed by Skymind that provides solutions for multiple diseases analysis for hospitals and research facilities, has announced the availability of its Axial AI tool for use by the NHS for free.

Designed in response to the coronavirus pandemic, Axial AI is a CT scan diagnosis platform that helps medical teams analyse the progression of COVID-19 in patients faster and with an accuracy rate of more than 90%.

Through AI innovation, the tool is able to automate the analysis of CT Scan images within 10 seconds, thereby speeding up the recovery strategy for an infected patient.

Axial AI has already been extensively deployed throughout Wuhan, Hubei and across other provinces in China. The COVID-19 specialised hospital in Wuhan, Huo Shen Shan and Lei Shen Shan Hospital have been using Axial AI to assist with the diagnosis of COVID-19 in over 6,000 patients. It has helped doctors treat the disease more effectively by giving them a unique, quantitative, view of the trauma happening inside the patient’s lungs. This allowed the doctors to make more efficient use of ventilators, ICU beds, and tracking if a treatment is being effective increasing the patient’s likelihood of survival.

Axial AI is backed by Skymind Global Ventures, an AI ecosystem builder that launched in the UK this year. The company provides clients with supported access to open source tools that help build AI applications as well as global capital funding and talent development. It recently unveiled an $800 million fund to support AI startups and research across Europe and Asia.  

Axial AI was jointly developed with support from Shanghai Research Centre for Brain Science and Brain-inspired Intelligence, led by China Academy of Sciences, Skymind Neurobionix Research, and United Imaging Intelligence, which provides AI solutions for medical devices, imaging, and diagnosis. The solution was developed using real Wuhan clinical data and has been used in real clinical cases for COVID-19. 

Shawn Tan, CEO of Skymind Global Ventures, said: “The entire world is facing an unprecedented crisis as a result of the coronavirus pandemic. We can only overcome such a threat to humanity by working together as a global society to find and share solutions that can save lives. We are proud to support Axial AI because they are creating a positive impact on society by using artificial intelligence as a force for good.” 

Axial AI is willing to donate a bundled package, including a private server for the NHS to run the Axial AI tool inhouse, and to process and analyse data locally. This is an on-premise solution that ensures no other entity apart from the NHS will have access to patient data and that it is also compliant with GDPR regulation. The integration of the CT Scan Machine to the server requires five minutes to set up and the hospital’s IT team can have the entire system running in less than a day. Axial AI will also offer local and online support if required to help with the implementation of the system. 

Shawn Tan added: “The Axial AI tool, designed specifically to address the medical challenges of the pandemic, has been vital to helping doctors diagnose patients battling COVID-19 swiftly and efficiently across China. It is also now being deployed in Malaysia. We now want the NHS to have the same opportunity to leverage these positive outcomes using Axial AI’s tool, and to help give patients the critical care and support they need during this urgent time.”

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