Throughout my career I’ve worked to use technology to democratize access to valuable resources, such as supporting massively open online education during my prior role as Udacity CEO. Especially now in the COVID era, our health is one of our most valuable resources. An accurate diagnosis from a doctor who’s working with the best information available can ease your mind and start the path to recovery. In an ideal world, anyone with a life threatening condition would have access to the same quality of care, regardless of whether they’re in a city with a world-class hospital or in a remote location. Telehealth enables that possibility and telehealth adoption has become essential in the COVID era. Forrester analysts forecast that virtual healthcare visits are on pace to top one billion by year-end.
At Nines, our mission is to democratize access to top-notch radiologists, reducing challenges of delayed diagnoses, inconsistent quality of reads, and inefficient integration. We created our Nines teleradiology practice to help give exceptional patient care and we support our Nines radiologists with innovative software. We’re putting quality first and pairing world class Nines radiologists with industry-first software to deliver high quality for patients and hospitals:
• Our NinesAI™ medical device has just received U.S. Food and Drug Administration clearance to provide widespread access to AI-enabled technology. NinesAI supports the automated radiological review of CT Head images for the possible presence of two time-critical, life-threatening indications - intracranial hemorrhage and mass effect - to aid radiologists in triaging cases.
• Nines is the first company to receive FDA clearance for artificial intelligence technology that triages mass effect conditions.
• To our knowledge, Nines is the first company to receive simultaneous FDA clearance on multiple indications.
Firsts that Can Make a Critical Difference
Access to timely, high-quality radiology is crucial with life-threatening emergent conditions, including head trauma and strokes, which can rapidly increase in severity and cause brain damage.
Our NinesAI medical device together with the Nines Navigator™ worklist and Nines Reading Assistant directly impacts time to treatment, supporting radiologists in delivering quality standardized reports, and streamlines integration and communication:
• Time to Intervention: With intracranial hemorrhage for example, the 30-day mortality rate ranges from 35% to 52% with only 20% of survivors expected to have full functional recovery at 6 months, and approximately half of this mortality occurs within the first 24 hours.* With NinesAI, radiologists can be notified of a potential life-threatening brain bleed in 15 seconds and begin reviewing the case immediately, as opposed to the current standard-of-care of reading studies in the order in which they were received, which can add significant time to diagnosis given high patient volume and numerous cases on busy radiologists’ worklists.
• Trusted Diagnoses: Nines’ teleradiology practice is built on a partnership between exceptional radiologists with remarkable data scientists and machine learning engineers. This unique combination not only gives medical practices and hospitals access to image readings of exceptional quality, but allows for expedient process improvements that increase radiologists’ time spent on interpreting and diagnosing conditions instead of on bureaucratic tedium.
• Streamlined Integration and a Continuous Feedback Loop: Nines’ radiologists provide diagnostic reads without the need to install onsite hardware. In promoting an ongoing collaboration between artificial intelligence and radiology expertise, Nines is a company where the whole is greater than the sum of its parts. Working side by side, radiologists and engineers rapidly iterate on findings to power faster innovation into our AI software. As Dr. Melissa Davis, M.D., VP of Nines Clinical Operations, puts it: “The features that we request and the way they get incorporated into the software is at a speed that I’ve never seen before.”
Giving Access to Everyone
My love of computers started when I received my first Apple IIGS for Christmas. It was the late 1980s and it was a hobby that quickly turned into a passion. I realized that software engineering could not only be a form of expression, it also had the ability to make an impact that’s larger than yourself and to help with important problems in the world.
In-house radiology departments are inundated with diagnostics as they face rising COVID cases, and we want to be able to give any healthcare or hospital system the ability to identify and triage emergent conditions. These healthcare providers and their teams deserve access to modern tools. As more healthcare systems face resource constraints, all current Nines customers and new customers who sign up with Nines’ teleradiology practice before June 30, 2020 will get NinesAI for free.
Nines is proud to advance the level of service and solve tough challenges in telehealth as an avenue of care that’s here to stay. Building on today’s momentum, we believe that Nines can provide modern tools with the potential to improve outcomes for everyone involved, from radiologists making the diagnoses, to ordering physicians providing hospital care and, most importantly, to patients awaiting treatment.
David Stavens is co-founder and CEO of Nines. Prior to Nines David was co-founder and CEO of Udacity, which democratized education with the first global, online, lifelong learning platform. He was also a pioneer in autonomous vehicles, helping create the first complete robotic car, “Stanley”, and co-founding Stanford University’s self-driving car team, which was acquired by Google as the foundation for Waymo. He holds a Ph.D. and M.S. in Computer Science from Stanford University, and a B.S.E. in Computer Science, Magna Cum Laude, from Princeton University.