GE HealthCare Receives $44M Grant to Develop AI-Assisted Ultrasound Tools for Maternal and Pediatric Care

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GE Healthcare, a global leader in medical technology, has received a grant of more than $44 million from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to develop AI-assisted ultrasound tools for maternal and pediatric care. Ultrasound is a critical tool for screening and diagnosing various medical conditions, including the health of expectant mothers and respiratory diseases.

The grant will facilitate the creation of user-friendly AI-assisted applications and tools that will enable healthcare professionals, even those without specialized training or experience with ultrasound, to perform quick and accurate ultrasound scans. These tools will provide clinical decision information to support more effective obstetric and lung screening ultrasound scans across maternal and fetal care as well as pediatric lung health.

Caption Health, a leader in medical AI that was acquired by GE Healthcare in February 2023, will design the technology to run on a range of ultrasound devices and probes, including lower-cost handheld devices. The goal is to expand access to high-quality care, particularly in low-and-middle income countries (LMIC).

Maternal and child mortality is a critical healthcare issue worldwide, with almost 800 women dying every day from preventable causes linked to pregnancy and childbirth. Approximately 95 percent of all maternal deaths occur in LMIC. Ultrasound technologies are used in maternal care to determine fetal health markers and conditions such as gestational age, fetal presentation, multiple gestation, fetal viability, umbilical blood flow, and ectopic pregnancy.

For children under the age of five, pneumonia is the leading cause of death globally. Early diagnosis is vital to effective treatment and preventing complications. Point-of-care lung ultrasound can provide physicians with a view of the entire lung and can diagnose pneumonia with greater accuracy compared to a bedside chest X-ray.

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Caption Health’s AI applications are designed to guide healthcare professionals step-by-step during an ultrasound exam, helping them capture and interpret high-quality ultrasound images. The grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation will support the development of multiple lung ultrasound and obstetric algorithms through clinical validation and regulatory submissions.

Currently, Caption Health offers Cardiac Guidance software, which is FDA cleared. With the support of the grant, Caption Health will expand the development of their existing lung ultrasound project and broaden the reach of this powerful technology to provide care to mothers and children.

This grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation is a significant step in making ultrasound more accessible in low-and-middle income countries. By leveraging AI technology, GE Healthcare and Caption Health aim to empower healthcare professionals with less experience to perform ultrasound scans effectively, ultimately increasing access to higher-quality medical care worldwide.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) Related to the Above News

What is the purpose of the grant received by GE Healthcare from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation?

The grant aims to develop AI-assisted ultrasound tools for maternal and pediatric care, with the goal of improving access to high-quality medical care, particularly in low-and-middle income countries.

How will the grant facilitate the development of these tools?

The grant will support the creation of user-friendly AI-assisted applications and tools that will enable healthcare professionals, even those without specialized training or experience with ultrasound, to perform accurate ultrasound scans quickly and effectively.

Which company will be designing the technology for the AI-assisted ultrasound tools?

Caption Health, a leader in medical AI that was acquired by GE Healthcare in February 2023, will design the technology to run on a range of ultrasound devices and probes, including lower-cost handheld devices.

What healthcare issues will the AI-assisted ultrasound tools address?

The tools will primarily focus on addressing maternal and child mortality. Ultrasound technologies in maternal care can help determine fetal health markers and conditions, while point-of-care lung ultrasound can aid in diagnosing pneumonia in children under the age of five.

How will the AI applications assist healthcare professionals during an ultrasound exam?

The AI applications will guide healthcare professionals step-by-step during the exam, helping them capture and interpret high-quality ultrasound images. This support will enhance the accuracy and effectiveness of the ultrasound scans.

Are there currently any AI-assisted ultrasound tools available from Caption Health?

Yes, Caption Health currently offers Cardiac Guidance software, which is FDA cleared. However, with the support of the grant, they will expand their development of lung ultrasound algorithms and broaden the reach of this technology to provide care to mothers and children.

What is the significance of the grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation?

The grant is a significant step in making ultrasound more accessible in low-and-middle income countries. By leveraging AI technology, GE Healthcare and Caption Health aim to empower healthcare professionals with less experience to perform ultrasound scans effectively, ultimately increasing access to higher-quality medical care worldwide.

Please note that the FAQs provided on this page are based on the news article published. While we strive to provide accurate and up-to-date information, it is always recommended to consult relevant authorities or professionals before making any decisions or taking action based on the FAQs or the news article.

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