Nuance Communications, a US-based developer of conversational AI tools for healthcare, has made available its AI-enabled radiology solutions – PowerScribe One reporting platform and mPower Clinical Analytics – in Australia and New Zealand.

WHAT THEY DO

PowerScribe One, a platform that combines conversational and cognitive AI and real-time communications, uses context-aware natural language understanding to convert unstructured reports into structured data to streamline data entry, increase reporting accuracy and consistency and render real-time evidence-based follow up recommendations. Data are synchronised in real-time for seamless data sharing with downstream systems such as radiology information systems, picture archiving and communication systems and electronic health records.

On the other hand, mPower Clinical Analytics uses natural language processing to automate the extraction of data from radiology reports. It streamlines the tracking of recommended follow-up imaging to ensure timely completion and reduce the incidence of failed follow-ups. The AI tool also analyses multiple variables simultaneously, builds custom graphs, delivers views of real-time dashboards and displays cumulative data. 

WHY IT MATTERS

Nuance said in a press release that its AI radiology solutions are designed to “alleviate burnout and improve reporting and clinical outcomes”.

A 2016 study published in the Journal of Medical Imaging and Radiation Oncology found that diagnostic imaging professionals in Australia and New Zealand experience high levels of occupational burnout, which were greater compared to those reported in other countries.

Occupational burnout exacerbates the growing global shortage of health workers, according to the World Health Organization. By the end of the decade, it was estimated that the health industry will be 18 million short of workers.

Last year, an online survey found that most Australian radiographers and radiation therapists experienced personal stress and anxiety at work due to the surge of COVID-19 infections. They had to deal with suspected COVID-19 patients having their CT scans to confirm their condition.

Meanwhile, through its AI solutions, Nuance intends to support care providers in bringing down the cost of transcription by automating workflows and integration of reporting data between systems and attain data-driven improvements in patient and financial outcomes. 

MARKET SNAPSHOT

In July, Australian radiology software developer Kestral and digital healthcare solutions provider Aceso Health from New Zealand entered into a multi-year collaboration deal to integrate their platforms. Their combined cloud-based booking system now enables patients and referrers to book and schedule different diagnostic appointments

Pacific Radiology, New Zealand’s largest diagnostic imaging company, has received an offer from energy and transport investor Infratil to acquire a major share of the company for up to NZ$350 million (around $252 million).

Market research by India-based Data Bridge projected that the radiology services market in Australia will be worth an estimated $56 billion by 2027, growing at an 11% CAGR from 2019, while the same market in New Zealand will grow to an estimated value of $681 million by 2026, increasing at a 7.5% CAGR from 2019.

ON THE RECORD

“We are committed to alleviating radiologist fatigue and advancing care quality by harnessing the power of AI and data-driven radiology to improve productivity, accuracy, and consistency, eliminate inefficiencies, and reduce the incidence of failed follow-ups,” said Karen Holzberger, SVP and general manager of Diagnostic Solutions at Nuance.

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By seohan