Google will introduce a new artificial intelligence system. It will consist of an app which will look at eye scans to find diseases like macular degeneration and sight loss caused by diabetes.The Moorfields Hospital in the UK is forming a partnership with Google’s AI division.
Previously, DeepMind was under criticism for an unpublicized sharing agreement with some London hospitals. An agreement on patient data from three hospitals based in London was revealed by the New Scientist magazine in May.
Then, Google analyzed kidney data in the hope of developing a medical app. The Streams app would let doctors know if someone was at risk of developing kidney injury. For the latest partnership, Google received support from the Institute of Blind People and charities like the Macular Society.
The app’s evolution over time is a mystery. Sam Smith, co-ordinator of the partnership believes that Google has learned from past mistakes and may be on the right path now.
However, a tech journalist was outraged after reading the news, and wrote a letter to Moorfields Hospital, reminding them of the Data Protection Act. Also a patient of the hospital, the journalist was dissatisfied with the hospital’s Google partnership and deemed it „unethical”.
Google has quoted estimates that 98% of sight loss triggered by diabetes could be prevented with early treatment. The disease is called diabetic retinopathy and affects more than 350 million people worldwide. Early detection could give hope to millions struggling with the condition.
DeepMind is a UK-based company, started in London, in 2010 and bought by Google in 2014 for £400 million. Deep Mind Health was launched in 2016 to collaborate with clinicians in health services and the NHS (National Health System in the UK).
Previous controversial agreements with three hospitals in London came under harsh criticism for not informing patients about providing their personal information to a commercial entity. Now Moorfields Hospital is trying to solve criticism by being more open towards the issue.
Sight loss due to preventable causes is predicted to double by 2050, so it’s important that cutting edge technology is used to save people from going blind.
Google intends to create an algorithm by analyzing large amounts of eye scans with an Artificial Intelligence System.
Image Source – Wikipedia