SRL Diagnostics, a diagnostic company based out in Mohali, Punjab providing diagnostic services in pathology and radiology, has partnered with Microsoft India to expand the later’s Artificial Intelligence (AI) Network for Healthcare to pathology, announced Microsoft.
This collaboration will help improve the quality of digital pathology for population screening by bringing together Microsoft’s Azure and AI innovations along with SRL’s world-class expertise in the study of cells and tissues (histology). With this addition, Microsoft’s AI Network for Healthcare has now expanded to include pathology along with eyecare and cardiology, thus representing the continued efforts made by the organisation to democratize healthcare.
SRL Diagnostics has 378 networking laboratories; 24 radiology/imaging centres; 40 NABL-accredited labs; 4 CAP-accredited labs; and a footprint spanning more than 6600 collection points. The company has large labs in Dubai, Sri Lanka and Nepal, and about 70 collection points in various countries outside India. T
Growing prevalence of chronic diseases such as cancer is one of the key factors for the need for pathology to transform. Digital pathology is increasingly being preferred as it has helped bring improvement in service delivery, patient safety and communications while reducing errors and lowering costs. Histopathology is a specialized form of pathology for analyzing tissue biopsies (mounted on glass slides) and is used for detecting numerous diseases. Histopathologists require highly efficient tools to assist in diagnosis, thus augmenting the demand for automated and innovative implementation of cloud and AI.
Commenting on the partnership Anil Bhansali, Managing Director, Microsoft India (R&D) Private Limited, said, “Microsoft is committed to empower both the healthcare industry and patients by using AI to democratize healthcare for all. Our partnership with SRL Diagnostics will assist pathologists by equipping them with technology that will augment their capability. This is the third area where we have expanded our AI Network for Healthcare after eyecare and cardiology. We will continue to look for other areas where we can deploy technology to make healthcare more accessible.”
Commenting on the partnership Arindam Haldar, Chief Executive Officer, SRL Diagnostics said, “In line with SRL’s vision to help people on their path to better health, we are delighted to be partnering with Microsoft to co-create solutions and generate both social and business value. Diagnosis is the first step to disease management, as without accurate identification of the cause there is no possibility of a precise treatment. With the growing number of samples of cancer, as well as of other diseases, there’s a need to quickly and accurately analyze the samples to help doctors arrive at a diagnosis faster. The AI platform that Microsoft will build in collaboration with SRL is expected to create a software environment infused with millions of data points and knowledge gained from SRL’s expert laboratory professionals.”
Microsoft AI Network for Healthcare aims to maximize the ability of AI and cloud computing to accelerate innovation in the healthcare industry and improve the lives of people around the world. By working side-by-side with the healthcare industry’s pioneering players, Microsoft is bringing its capabilities and applying AI to devices for early detection of diabetic retinopathy to prevent blindness. Microsoft has also recently launched an AI-powered Cardiovascular Disease Risk Score API for Indian population.
As the largest diagnostic laboratory in the country, SRL Diagnostics has a repository of more than a million histopathology slides which would be used for training an AI algorithm. By increasing efficiency in the initial steps in a biopsy tissue analysis through artificial neural networks, it will be possible for a histopathology laboratory to cut down on inadvertent manual errors and process more samples in a day with higher level of accuracy.
Of late, India has proved that it is fast picking up pace in adopting emerging technologies like AI, blockchain and IoT in healthcare. Last month, in order to curb counterfeit medical products and drugs in specific, NITI Aayog, a government of India think tank, has partnered with the technology giant Oracle and Apollo Hospitals, where Oracle will integrate its blockchain technology and a distributed ledger solution in pharmaceutical supply chain, which will create records that are unchangeable for each pharma transaction.
[Top Image – Qeprize.org]