Our first research paper, published on Nature Medicine’s website on Monday 13 August 2018, demonstrated a significant step towards our goal of creating technology which would allow eye health professionals to prioritise patients with the most serious eye conditions and treat them before lasting damage occurs.
Firstly,we have developed AI technology which can match the accuracy of expert ophthalmologists and optometrists when identifying a range of eye conditions – such as age-related macular degeneration and diabetic eye disease – and generating
the correct referral recommendation.
Secondly, the research used de-identified OCT scans taken from routine care and benchmarked against real de-identified referral decisions used at Moorfields Eye Hospital, demonstrating that the AI technology is applicable to real-world healthcare settings.
The AI technology can also provide information that explains to eye health professionals how it arrived at its decisions. We think this is critically important for clinical application, since it will allow doctors, nurses and healthcare professionals to scrutinise these recommendations.
The research also demonstrated that the AI technology can be easily applied to different types of eye scanner, massively increasing the number of people across the world that it could benefit, and future-proofing the technology against new devices and models that could emerge in the future.
It’s still early days, but we believe AI could revolutionise the way eye diseases are diagnosed, treated and managed, creating a system which enables eye care professionals to quickly prioritise patients with the most serious eye diseases before irreversible damage sets in – taking us one step closer to preventing avoidable sight loss.