Artificial intelligence (AI) stroke imaging will be deployed across centers in Hungary after Brainomix was awarded a national tender.
The company was granted the tender for all stroke centers in the country as part of the National Institute for Health Development initiative to improve stroke care.
Following a competitive process, the five-year program that was awarded to Brainomix is funded under the EU4Health program and is the first time that a single stroke AI imaging platform will be deployed across an entire country.
Technological partner: eRAD
This latest tender will build upon an earlier EU grant that had funded the installation of Brainomix’s flagship e-Stroke platform in ten hospitals in and around the Hungarian city of Pécs. It will enable e-Stroke to be deployed across the remaining 28 stroke centers in Hungary’s national healthcare system, with the support of eRAD, who will be serving as a technological partner.
e-Stroke is a collection of tools that use AI algorithms to support doctors by providing real-time interpretation of brain scans to help guide treatment and transfer decisions for stroke patients, allowing more patients to be treated in the right place, at the right time.
The initiative to use AI to improve stroke care and patient outcomes for the benefit of all stroke patients in Hungary. It was driven by world leading neuroscientist, Professor István Szikora of the National Institute of Mental Health, Neurology and Neurosurgery, in Budapest, which will serve as the national stroke center with full oversight for the program.
Szikora said: “Each year more than 20,000 stroke patients are admitted to hospitals across Hungary. e-Stroke has been shown to enable faster treatment times facilitating better patient outcomes, as experienced in single sites here in Hungary and reported in other countries including the UK and Poland.
“In our earlier experience with e-Stroke we were particularly impressed by its comprehensive suite of imaging solutions, with the ability to be used in small general hospitals as well as large stroke centres. We are glad that, with the support of an EU grant (EFOP 5.2.6-20), this option now will be available in multiple stroke centers throughout the country.”
The e-Stroke platform will support both specialist and non-specialist clinicians to interpret stroke brain scans in real-time, and to identify patients who need urgent treatments or transfer to a specialist hospital. Using the e-Stroke mobile app, doctors can securely share brain scans with specialists at other hospitals, bringing expert decision making to all hospital Emergency Departments 24/7.
The e-Stroke platform has been in use at Semmelweis University Hospital, Budapest, for the past four years, where the primary stroke center treats more than 700 stroke patients each year.
Dr Bence Gunda, a neurologist based at the department of neurology at Semmelweis, has previsouly shown that treatment rates for stroke patients improved and treatment times were reduced following the installation of Brainomix’s e-Stroke.
Gunda said: “Our results are indicative of the impact that Brainomix’s technology can have on a stroke network, helping physicians make faster decisions so that more patients can get the optimum treatment.
“e-Stroke facilitates the diagnosis of acute ischemic stroke by quantifying the extent of ischemic damage, indicating where there are occluded vessels and assessing the status of collateral circulation. The CT perfusion module is very helpful in assessing the eligibility of late-time-window patients for thrombectomy.”
In addition to the full national tender for Hungary, e-Stroke has been adopted by other countries in Europe, including across Andalucía in Spain. In 2021, Brainomix was awarded the national tender for 17 of Poland’s largest comprehensive stroke centers.
In the UK, Brainomix won a NHS Artificial Intelligence in Health and Care Award to deploy e-Stroke across a number of UK stroke networks and evaluate its impact on stroke care across NHS regions.
Improve stroke care
Michalis Papadakis, Brainomix’s chief executive officer, said: “We are absolutely delighted that e-Stroke has been chosen to help improve stroke care in Hungary. It demonstrates further the superiority of our e-Stroke platform and solidifies our position as market leader in Europe.
“Roll out across Hungary has already begun, with plans for installation and training in all 38 hospitals over the coming months, underlining the speed and ease of installation and our ability to deploy e-Stroke at scale.
“AI is transforming healthcare in many ways, and we are proud to be pioneering AI-enabled imaging solutions in precision medicine for better treatment decisions not only in stroke, but also in other indications including lung fibrosis and cancer.”