4 July 2023

MP visits finalists for transformative AI heart disease technology

Clive Betts MP paid a visit to Sheffield Teaching Hospitals to meet the team behind transformative AI heart disease technology 

Clive Betts MP has paid a visit to Sheffield Teaching Hospitals on Thursday 29 June to see first-hand how the AI work which he has nominated for an NHS Future Parliamentary Award is being used to speed up and improve heart disease diagnosis.

The visit, which was hosted at the Royal Hallamshire Hospital, was made in advance of the national NHS Parliamentary Awards ceremony which is taking place in London on the NHS’ 75th birthday.

During the visit Clive was given a tour of the University of Sheffield’s state-of-the-art MRI unit, which houses a 1.5T MRI scanner capable of seeing changes in the heart and blood vessels that would once not have been observable. The cutting-edge technology is helping to improve heart disease care, and improve vital research in respiratory and neurological conditions such as motor neurone disease.

He was then shown a hands-on demonstration of how the AI tool works, with the team of clinicians and scientists from Sheffield Teaching Hospitals and the University of Sheffield explaining how the AI technology automatically segments and analyses the heart’s function. It does this by performing tasks on a staggering series of over 180 images taken from one patient’s MRI scan in seconds. Without the technology, these tasks would need to be performed manually.

The team also explained that the technology was able to monitor changes in pressure that took place over the course of the cardiac cycle, enabling clinicians to identify and spot where the heart’s function may be disrupted at a level of detail previously not available.

Dr Kavitasagary Karunasaagarar, Consultant Radiologist at Sheffield Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, said: “The fully automatic cardiac MRI segmentation analysis has already made significant strides in improving both the efficiency and precision of cardiac MRI analysis, so we were delighted to welcome Clive Betts MP to see the AI technology first hand. This distinguished recognition underlines the commitment our team has shown in revolutionising healthcare through technological innovations.”

Clive Betts MP, Local MP for Sheffield South East, said: “I was really impressed by the innovative use of AI to improve the images which doctors have to help them more accurately diagnose heart problems. This is already leading to more speedy identification of problems and is therefore reducing waiting times for treatment.”

The national NHS Parliamentary Award ceremony will take place tomorrow (5 July) at the Queen Elizabeth II Centre, Westminster, London.


The photo shows Clive Betts MP (second from left) with the team behind the AI cardiac segmentation tool (L-R) Sheffield Teaching Hospitals Scientific and Innovation Director Professor Wendy Tindale OBE, Consultant Radiologist Dr Kavitasagary Karunasaagarar, Consultant Cardiothoracic Radiologist Dr Andrew Swift, Clinical Scientist Dr Pete Metherall and University of Sheffield Senior Research Scientist in AI Mr Michael Sharkey.

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