The company has developed a support system for radiologists designed to help them cope with the masses of information they receive, and to focus on the most important information
Radiologists (doctors who analyze medical scans like x-rays) use medical imaging to help them gather relevant information and analyze and diagnose their patients’ conditions. Israeli company AIdoc wants to help them do it more quickly and just as accurately.
A short pitch: What does the company do?
A: AIdoc (formerly TailorMed) is building a platform for radiologists that will improve the process of analyzing medical scans.
A slightly more thorough explanation
A: The technology analyzes the scan and the patient’s clinical information, and guides the radiologist to the most relevant places in the scan. We envelop the entire work process in order to release the main bottlenecks in the analysis process. We enable the radiologist to focus on what they do best, analyzing diseases. This is where their knowledge is optimally utilized. In order to accomplish this, we work with new artificial intelligence technology based on deep learning, which we have tailored especially for medical information. The technology makes it possible to find irregularities in a general way that includes many types of diseases, without focusing on an individual disease.
Q: How did you get the idea?
A: That’s an interesting question. Most technological entrepreneurs go into the cyber field after their army service. We, however, had a strong urge to go into the medical field. The entire team spent many days and nights together assembling a list of possible ideas. This was actually the third idea on the list. The responses to the first two ideas were nice. As soon as we began working with the current idea, however, we realized that it was the right direction. Speaking with radiology department managers showed us that there is a huge gap for which radiologists need a solution. When we saw how radiologists work in the US, we discovered an extreme situation in which the pressure of handling an enormous number of scans in an extremely short time was liable to have disastrous results. We realized that a change could be made here that could only come from breakthrough technology.
Q: What stage have you reached?
A: The first product is in development. We are on the verge of installing it for the first time at hospitals in Israel and the US. Our goal is to verify that the doctors like what we’re doing. That’s why we’re so close to the market that we have a regular representative present on the beta site in the US.
Q: Who are your competitors?
A: The biggest competitor is IBM Watson Health. They are doing amazing things, but their way of operating is a little different. What IBM really wants is to do the entire analysis chain automatically. That can only be done if they focus on very specific diseases. In a certain sense, they’re going very far on a very narrow road. We appreciate the approach they have selected. We’re aiming at a different market. Our concept is to be a support system for radiologists, and our goal is to help them cope with the masses of information he has, and to focus on the most important information. Our idea is to provide a broad tool that helps radiologists in their daily work.
Q: How do you plan to make money?
A: Our business model is based on direct sales to radiology departments. Most of the market is currently private, and radiologists are paid for analyzing a scan. The market is huge. Anyone who can give the doctor a product that helps them work better will make a lot of money.
Q: Have you already received investments? How many? Who invested?
A: We raised $3.5 million from the Magma and e.merge funds.
Q: Who are the company founders?
A: CEO Elad Walach, who founded and managed the algorithm research team in the air force; CTO Michael Braginsky, who founded and managed a Ministry of Defense research and development unit; VP R&D Guy Reiner, a veteran of the IDF 8200 signal intelligence unit; and Yale University radiologist Dr. Gal Yaniv.
Q: How many employees do you have? Where are your offices?
A: We have eight employees. Our offices are on Rothschild Blvd. in Tel Aviv.
AIdoc is taking part in the Startup Arena, Geektime’s startup competition taking place for the ninth consecutive year in the framework of the Geektime Conference. Past participants include companies such as Kaltura, Cyactive, and SalesPredict, among others. The 2016 Startup Arena competition this year is sponsored by Altshuler Shaham Benefits.