#440 – The Wire

  • MIT’s Ultrasound Patch: MIT researchers developed a stamp-sized ultrasound patch that provides continuous imaging of blood vessels and internal organs. The researchers had volunteers wear the ultrasound patch for 48 hours while they performed various activities such as sitting and jogging, finding that it maintained adhesion and produced high-resolution images throughout the study. The team will next focus on supporting wireless operation, as it works towards its goal of making the patch as accessible as “Band-Aids at the pharmacy.”
  • AI Implementation Roadmap: Some of the biggest names in imaging AI just published what might be the most well thought out framework for implementing clinical AI. The RSNA Special Report is worth a complete review for anyone implementing AI, with details on infrastructure requirements, governance, AI tool decision making, and ongoing monitoring and maintenance.
  • Low Portal Engagement: A study out of UAB found that patients often skip the radiology report area of their online patient portals. Analysis of 139k patients who accessed UAB’s portal found that only 27% interacted with its radiology report section, while 47% accessed the portal’s lab results section. Although certain groups were more likely to use the patient portal (white, female, more educated), researchers couldn’t identify demographic explanations for why patients accessed the radiology and lab report sections.
  • Ultrasound X-Rays: A team of China-based researchers developed an AI algorithm called UXGAN (Ultrasound to X-ray Generative Attentional Network) that creates X-ray-like images from ultrasound exams. In their study of 200 children, the researchers found that the ultrasound-synthesized X-rays produced scoliosis measurements that were comparable to actual X-ray images (r = 0.95). 
  • Cleerly Closes Series C (Again): Even though we called Cleerly’s $192M Series C “colossal” in our original coverage last week, the heart attack prediction startup wasn’t done yet, and has now officially closed the funding round after bumping the total raise to $223M. Cleerly plans to use the investment to expand the commercial reach of its AI software that evaluates noninvasive CT angiograms for plaque build-up to enable earlier detection of heart disease and calculate the likelihood of a patient having a heart attack.
  • Value-Based Time-Out: A provocative opinion piece in STAT made waves last week after calling for a “time-out” for value-based care experimentation. The authors make the case that current approaches to value-based care have ambiguous quality metrics that do little to improve outcomes but plenty to incentivize reducing care and upcoding.
  • GE’s Premium Definium 656 HD: GE Healthcare launched its Definium 656 HD X-ray system, positioning it at the top of its fixed overhead tube suspension X-ray lineup. Continuing GE’s recent focus on improving imaging team workflows, much of the Definium 656 HD’s highlighted features focus on automating technologists’ tasks, either through direct workflow enhancements (e.g. auto-positioning, image consistency tools, in-room workflows) or through image quality features that cut ‘repeat and reject’ rates (e.g. new detectors, image processing, image creation apps).
  • NY Imaging Center Fraud: A New York imaging center owner is facing federal and civil charges related to operating a referral kickback scheme and performing unnecessary exams. For years, Payam Toobian MD and his company America’s Imaging allegedly bribed other physicians to refer patients for exams and performed additional procedures that weren’t included in the referral orders (including contrast-enhanced MRIs), leading to over $1M in false Medicaid claims.
  • CXR + VBC Mortality Predictions: A new PLOS Digital Health study detailed a creative chest X-ray-based AI system that accurately predicted COVID patients’ comorbidities and mortality, and could be used to guide treatment decisions. The researchers trained the model using 14k non-COVID CXRs to predict a range of data points (sex, age, value-based care HCC codes, RAF risk scores) and tested it against 900 COVID patients’ CXRs (487 external), predicting six different comorbidities with a 0.85 AUC. They then applied those biomarkers to a logistic regression model, which predicted patient mortality with a 0.84 AUC. 
  • Hospital Margin Loss Streak: Patient volume and expense improvements haven’t been enough to offset the hospital industry’s growing cost of care, as US hospitals’ median operating margin is now officially in the red through the first six months of the year (-0.09%). Kaufman Hall’s latest National Hospital Flash Report showed positive month-over-month trends for both outpatient revenue (up 2.6%) and operating room minutes (up 2.4%), but margins are still “nowhere near pre-pandemic levels” and “will likely end up with historically low margins for the remainder of the year.”
  • Family Medicine POCUS: A new Michigan Medicine study revealed promising point-of-care ultrasound adoption trends within US family medicine departments, while also highlighting key POCUS adoption barriers. The 2021 survey of 96 family medicine leaders found that 81% of their departments have at least one POCUS-trained faculty member and 44% use POCUS in outpatient care, but only 6% are billing for these exams. The respondents cited faculty time and funding as their two main POCUS training barriers (48% & 15%), while describing equipment purchasing and POCUS exam billing as “difficult” (70% & 73%).

You're signed up!

It's great to have you as a reader. Check your inbox for a welcome email.

Another important feature of the best 10 dollar minimum deposit online casino is casino licensing. The best online casinos are regulated by regulators and must meet set standards in order to keep their clients happy. Regulatory bodies such as the UK Gambling Commission, the Malta Gaming Authority, and the Kahnawake Gaming Commission oversee casinos and ensure that they adhere to their rules. Licensed casinos will not accept players under the legal age limit, and they will have to audit their games to ensure fairness and safety.

-- The Imaging Wire team