Oxford University Hospital deploys blood analyser as part of COVID screening

The analyser is part of an assessment of the AI-based ‘CURIAL’ test to screen for COVID-19 in patients.
By Sara Mageit
08:18 am
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The Israeli blood diagnostics company, Sight Diagnostics behind delivering lab-grade full blood count (FBC) results to emergency departments, has deployed Sight OLO at the John Radcliffe Hospital, Oxford University Hospitals NHS FT.

The deployment allows FBC testing for patients attending the emergency departments in the UK and is supporting the validation of an AI triage system for COVID-19.

Sight OLO enables faster predictions to be generated by Oxford University’s ‘CURIAL AI’ screening test, which was developed in December last year. The platform leverages patients’ routine vital signs and FBC results to predict the likelihood of a patient having COVID-19. 

WHY IT MATTERS

According to The Lancet Digital Health, the CURIAL algorithm has proven to be an effective triage tool that can rule-out COVID-19 within the first hour of patients coming to the hospital.

Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) tests typically have a turnaround time of 12-48 hours and require specialist equipment and staff. With CURIAL, Sight OLO could allow staff in emergency rooms to receive a prediction to rule-out COVID-19 in under 30 minutes.

Sight OLO received regulatory approval for use in the UK and is CE Marked according to the IVD European directive at point of care settings. In the US, Sight OLO is 510(k) cleared for use in moderate complexity laboratories.

THE LARGER CONTEXT

In the fight against COVID-19, France has announced that they will trial a digital vaccine passport for a month. Passengers travelling to Martinique and Guadeloupe will use the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) AOKpass smartphone app to prove COVID-safe status.

ON THE RECORD

Dr Andrew Soltan, an academic clinician and a machine learning researcher at Oxford University said: “Having accurate FBC results in minutes, from OLO, would help CURIAL make predictions even sooner, potentially reducing care delays and supporting infection control within hospitals. Our goal is to get the right treatment to patients sooner by helping rule-out COVID at triage for a majority of patients who don’t have the infection.

“This project shows that artificial intelligence can work with rapid diagnostics to help us select the best care pathways and minimise risks of spreading the infection in hospitals.” 

Yossi Pollak, CEO and co-founder of Sight Diagnostics said: “We’re proud to collaborate with a cutting-edge institution like Oxford University on their CURIAL analysis program to help manage the effects of the pandemic.

“We see time and again when FBC results are made available to clinicians quickly and easily, patient care models are reconfigured for the better. The CURIAL project is a beacon of what’s possible, and we are keen to support other health institutions by enabling access to fast, convenient and accurate FBC through OLO.” 

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