Baystate Health, the premier integrated health system serving more than 800,000 patients in western New England, announced a partnership with Life Image, the largest medical evidence network providing access to points of care and curated clinical and imaging data, to develop novel artificial intelligence tools that would help advance technical innovations in radiology, neurology and oncology.
Specifically, TechSpring, the innovation arm for Baystate, will work with Life Image to evaluate a number of AI solutions including those that promise to improve speed and accuracy in diagnosing blood clots in stroke patients; improve clinical pathways for physicians treating or diagnosing a patient by finding and comparing clinical criteria against a group of de-identified patients with similar clinical characteristics; and identify potential patient matches to oncology clinical trials in order to advance cancer research, as well as give western New England residents better access to potentially life-saving treatments.
Baystate and Life Image began working together 10 years ago when the health system became one of the company’s first customers. Life Image created the image exchange category when it developed solutions more than a decade ago to help solve the many technical and structural barriers that prevented the seamless exchange of medical images.
With its beginnings in image exchange, Life Image is now a global medical evidence network that offers ‘living’ datasets of novel imaging data that’s linkable to other clinical information and provides network access to points-of-care to enable improved care delivery, novel research and innovation.
Baystate has been a healthcare innovator since 1873 when it first established the modern American hospital in Springfield, which was one of only 178 acute care hospitals in the country. Baystate has played an important role in the evolution of the healthcare industry by advancing leading-edge methods such as fast-track cardiac, chronic care, homeopathic medicine and educational innovation for physicians and nurses.
“Baystate Health and TechSpring are excited to partner with Life Image on the next generation of healthcare technology with AI initiatives that have targeted use cases with high clinical utility and value,” said Richard Hicks, MD, department chair of radiology at Baystate. “For example, by understanding how similar patients may have been diagnosed or treated can help improve accuracy and, ultimately, patient outcomes.”
Baystate launched TechSpring five years ago to accelerate innovation in healthcare informatics and technology to solve the challenges of healthcare. TechSpring provides technology companies access to a real, live health system using a proven process and platform to test and validate digital health solutions.
“TechSpring has tackled a variety of challenges for Baystate, from transitions in care to operational efficiencies. This is a big, bold next step into the world of AI,” said Joel Vengco, vice president, chief information officer and TechSpring founder. “Baystate is a living lab to pursue those big ideas, learn quickly and eventually share with the wider market.”
“Life Image enables creative collaborations outside of healthcare’s traditional silos through use of its leading technical capabilities and unmatched evidence-based network,” said Matthew A. Michela, president and CEO of Life Image. “This partnership with Baystate and TechSpring will facilitate new breakthrough technologies that work in the real healthcare world, specifically in the practice setting where patients and clinicians interact.”
Accenture analyzed key clinical health AI applications and found that they can potentially create $150 billion in annual savings in the United States by 2026. A McKinsey report found that a potential for healthcare AI to deliver between $350 billion and $410 billion in annual value by 2025.