Boston Children’s, GE Healthcare Partnering to Improve Pediatric Brain Scans | Healthcare Informatics Magazine | Health IT | Information Technology Skip to content Skip to navigation

Boston Children’s, GE Healthcare Partnering to Improve Pediatric Brain Scans

November 28, 2016
by Heather Landi
| Reprints

Boston Children’s Hospital and GE Healthcare plans to collaborate on developing and commercializing digital solutions to advance the diagnosis and treatment of specific childhood diseases, starting with diseases that affect the brain.

The first project, detailed at the annual meeting of the Radiological Society of North America (RSNA) taking place in Chicago this week, aims to improve diagnostic accuracy in pediatric brain scans by providing real-time contextual information at the time and place the radiologist needs it, according to a press release. 

Every day, tens of thousands of children undergo medical imaging. At Boston Children’s Hospital, which is a 404-bed comprehensive center for pediatric and adolescent healthcare, nearly 1,000 imaging studies are performed each day. For general radiologists and pediatric imagers alike, the rapid changes in the body that occur as part of normal childhood development can pose challenges to accurately differentiate normal from abnormal.

Leveraging the high-volume computing power of the GE Health Cloud and the clinical knowledge of radiologists at Boston Children’s, the two organizations are working to develop a decision support platform that is intended to help distinguish the large variability in brain MRI scans. According to a press release, the system will be pre-loaded with normative reference scans from young children of different ages for doctors worldwide to use as a benchmark when reading scans of pediatric patients.

“Interpreting pediatric brain scans requires a specific understanding of the developing brain,” Richard Robertson, M.D., radiologist-in-chief at Boston Children’s, said. “Since most pediatric imaging is not performed in children’s hospitals by specialists, this new digital tool, once available, will provide non-specialists with access to knowledge and expertise to help effectively diagnose children. We believe that by providing decision support at the time of interpretation, we can improve both the confidence and performance of the interpreting radiologist.”

“Pediatric brain scans of children under the age of four can be particularly tricky to read because the brain is rapidly developing during this period of childhood,” Sanjay Prabhu, pediatric neuroradiologist at Boston Children’s, said. “Since pediatric neuroradiologists are very scarce, we approached GE Healthcare to collaborate on the development of digital tools to help physicians of varying expertise read the scans.”

During infancy and childhood, complicated disorders, especially when affecting the brain symmetrically, may be misinterpreted as normal brain maturation. Conversely, normal expected developmental changes are sometimes misinterpreted as pathologic leading to unnecessary follow-on imaging or other diagnostic tests, which can be expensive, stressful and inconvenient to the child and family.

Boston Children’s is participating via its Innovation and Digital Health Accelerator (IDHA), led by Jean Mixer, VP strategy and digital health, and John Brownstein, PhD, chief innovation officer.
 

Get the latest information on Health IT and attend other valuable sessions at this two-day Summit providing healthcare leaders with educational content, insightful debate and dialogue on the future of healthcare and technology.

Learn More

Topics

News

HIT Advisory Committee Advances Recommendations on Core Data Sets for Interoperability

The Health Information Technology Advisory Committee, a federal advisory committee to the Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT (ONC), voted Wednesday to approve nine recommendations to update the list of data elements that vendors must exchange to be considered interoperable.

ACP Study: Only 37 Percent of MIPS Measures Are Valid

A new study from the American College of Physicians Performance Measurement Committee rated as valid only 37 percent of the 86 Quality Payment Program measures for 2017 deemed relevant to ambulatory general internal medicine.

Intermountain Healthcare Launches Study to Unlock Genomic Data

Researchers from the Salt Lake City, Utah-based Intermountain Healthcare have announced a long-term prospective study that they think has the potential to help physicians and others unlock genomic data.

UNC Health Care Receives HIMSS Analytics Stage 7 Designation

UNC Health Care, an integrated health care system based in Chapel Hill, N.C., has achieved Stage 7 designation on the HIMSS Analytics’ Electronic Medical Record Adoption Model (EMRAM).

FDA Announces Plan to Advance Medical Device Safety and Cybersecurity

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has announced new proposals aimed at advancing medical device cybersecurity, including placing new responsibilities on manufacturers, both before and after their devices hit the market.

Black Book: 9 in 10 Small Practices Not Optimizing Advanced EHR Functionalities

Eighty-eight percent of small practices of six or less practitioners still aren't optimizing advanced EHR (electronic health record) tools such as patient engagement, secure messaging, decision support and electronic data sharing, according to the latest Black Book survey