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With RSNA on the horizon and so much going on at the Blackford booth, it can be hard to keep track of everything that’s happening. So we decided to put the spotlight on our CEO, Ben Panter, who sat down with marketing manager, Greg Kingston, for a Q&A session focused exclusively on RSNA 2019.

For those of you interested in catching up with Ben at RSNA 2019, be sure to catch his session Driving Revenue in Radiology with AI, or book a meeting on our booth.

Greg Kingston: What’s been going on at Blackford since RSNA 2018?

Ben Panter: Well, that’s not a short answer, so I’ll stick to some of the main highlights! The key point is that we again doubled our deployed base year-on-year, which is the third consecutive year we’ve done that now. We’ve also grown our partnerships, and look forward to accelerating that growth in 2020 as we now have access to 20% of the US radiology market through our channel partners.

Beyond that we’ve had some great progress in terms of partnerships, including a very exciting collaboration agreement with healthcare giant Bayer.

Oh, and winning the medical imaging innovator award in the medical imaging AI marketplace solution category in Frost & Sullivan’s 2019 Visionary Innovation Leadership awards was pretty nice too!

GK: What can visitors expect to see on Blackford’s booth at RSNA 2019?

BP: Front and center will be our flagship product, Blackford Platform. This is a single platform that simplifies the implementation and management of multiple imaging applications and AI algorithms. New applications can easily be added to the image-processing platform, reducing implementation time, costs, and long-term maintenance. Easily integrated into existing workflows, it provides actionable information that allows healthcare providers to use imaging information smartly and reduce the cost of care, while improving diagnostic confidence and patient outcomes.

We will also be showing RSNA attendees our Curated Marketplace. This is our library of vetted applications that enables users to confidently and quickly build a toolbox of imaging applications, saving time and reducing costs.

Finally, we’ll also be very excited to introduce delegates to the all-new Blackford Dashboard.  Due to be launched at RSNA 2019, this is a powerful monitoring tool for users of Blackford Platform. By providing 24/7 insight into the platform’s health, as well as all activity and data being processed on it, Blackford Dashboard gives PACS administrators, healthcare IT departments and PACS vendors unparalleled access to the key system health and analysis information they need.

GK: Is Blackford going to introduce any new Platform Partners at RSNA 2019?

BP: Of course! We have several new applications available on the Platform that we think people are going to find very interesting:

  • SubtlePET– an AI-powered solution that improves image quality of PET scans, resulting in a faster scan with image quality equivalent to the ground truth image.
  • Vida LungPrint– a fully-automated, AI-powered analysis of a chest CT scan, providing quantified lung physiology and functional tissue.
  • Image Biopsy Lab KOALA– an AI-driven solution enabling medical experts to monitor osteoarthritis progression in an objective and standardized matter.

GK: What do you expect to be the hot topics and trends at RSNA?

BP: Well, with more than 125 companies showing AI technologies at RSNA, it’s clear there will be a lot of discussion around which solutions can generate value – both for the radiology group and the healthcare provider – and how to monetize that. There are a lot of questions that potential buyers need to be thinking about, so I hope they’re prepared!

GK: And finally, what are you most looking forward to at RSNA?

BP: I’m very interested to see if the increasing maturity of AI vendors will have an impact on the industry. Will we start seeing real purchase activity around AI rather than the wait and see approach that has been prevalent in recent years?

And of course, I’m also keen to gain more insight into what is coming next. It’s important that companies like Blackford, with an established foothold in market, try to provide guidance to new companies to ensure they are creating real value in order to boost their chances of achieving sales traction.

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