The Medical University of South Carolina (MUSC) recently announced a 10-year partnership with Siemens, the industrial manufacturing company, to use Siemens artificial intelligence capabilities in the treatment of patients. Dr. David Cole, the president of MUSC, along with Bernd Montag, CEO of Siemens Healthineers created the partnership to help fix a health care system that is “fractured, broken, wasteful and duplicative.” (http://academicdepartments.musc.edu/newscenter/2018/siemens-partnership-with-musc/index.html)

“We are leveraging a longstanding relationship to reshape what we can both deliver in health care,” said Dr Cole. “As the leading academic health sciences center in this state, MUSC’s purpose must be to drive the highest quality care for our patients at the lowest costs through commitment and partnerships.  In discussions with the Seimens Healthineers team, we discovered a high degree of alignment with these concepts, and we are very excited to have them move forward with us.”

The new partnership will allow information sharing between the two organizations which will be overseen by a steering committee made up of MUSC and Siemens officials. The first goal the partnership hopes to tackle is to drastically reduce the amount of time patients wait before being treated for a severe stroke. The national goal sets a standard of less than 90 minutes from entry to the hospital until the start of surgery to open a blocked blood vessel. MUSC is already faster than the average but has set a goal of reducing this time to 18 to 26 minutes.

“South Carolina sits within our nation’s stroke belt, and by combining a world-class stroke program with the incredible power of Siemens Healthineers, we expect to achieve a level of excellence in stroke care that has never been routinely achieved in everyday practice,” said Patrick Cawley MD, MUSC Health CEO.  “The faster that we can get patients suffering from a stroke into treatment, the more likely a patient can return to a productive and healthy life.  It’s ambitious, but it’s necessary if we want to achieve that alignment of increased efficiency, cost-effectiveness and the highest quality of severe stroke care.”

The new partners will also use patient’s medical information to help diagnose the best treatment plan for each patient.  The partners plan to collaborate using artificial intelligence (AI) to help clinicians create various models to help decide the best treatment options.   The AI may be used to predict outcomes based on a patient’s health information and data on the patient’s past medical history. “Like no other company, we can help transform care delivery in everyday clinical practice with our innovative products and extensive experience in automation and digitalization, and bring added value to health care providers as well as patients,” said Bernd Montag.

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