Artificial Intelligence, Innovation, News, Technology

DeepMind’s Eye Diagnosis AI

Kenneth Lomas

Kenneth Lomas, Writer

DeepMind’s Health Division live demos its eye disease diagnosis AI, which would be its first commercial medical product.

In March 2019, DeepMind showed their first live demo on a patient who had a retinal scan and diagnosis performed on her eye.

The data was analysed in Google Cloud which provided an urgency score and a detailed diagnosis in approximately 30 seconds.

Optical Coherence Tomography (OCT) is used by the NHS to produce high resolution retinal scans to help diagnose eye diseases, such as: Glaucoma, Diabetic Retinopathy, and Age-related macular degeneration.

DeepMind’s first medical AI product analyses OCT data using algorithms on the Google Cloud to diagnose eye diseases in real time. The product is pending regulatory approval.

DeepMind is a British Artificial Intelligence company founded in 2010, you may have heard of its AlphaGo program which made headlines when it defeated Lee Sedol (one of the highest ranked Go players in the world) in March 2016 with 4 out of 5 wins.

The health division of DeepMind was founded in 2016 to develop real world applications of AI technologies in GP surgeries and hospitals.

The AI company is now owned by Alphabet, who acquired DeepMind in 2014.

For the past 3 years, the product has been developed with London’s Moorfields Eye Hospital with its research published last August in the scientific journal Nature Medicine.  A spokesperson for DeepMind has said if approved the Moorfields Eye Hospital will be able to use the product for free for 5 years.

The offer of an AI-powered assistant for Nurses and Doctors of the NHS is attractive in the short term but no long terms deals have been put in place, which runs the risk of them charging the NHS.

Although DeepMind has been said to run independently from Alphabet, there are still concerns regarding NHS patients medical/personal data going overseas.

In July 2017, the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) found that patient information wasn’t processed fairly and lawfully, saying that four of the Data Protection Act 1998’s principles were broken.

In a letter written in response to the ICO decision, DeepMind said “there is no doubt that mistakes were made, and lessons must be learned.”

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