NHS hospitals turn to deep learning and advanced algorithms to
fight heart disease
The HeartFlow Analysis is now available in 13 hospitals in England to help physicians
diagnose Coronary Heart Disease, one of the leading causes of death in the UK
The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) estimates that the
HeartFlow Analysis can save the NHS a potential £9.1 million per year
REDWOOD CITY, Calif. - August 15, 2018 - New technology using deep learning and
advanced algorithms to evaluate blood flow to the heart is now being used in English hospitals
to fight against coronary heart disease.
Coronary heart disease (CHD) is one of the leading causes of death in the UK. It is responsible
for more than 66,000 deaths each year and it is estimated that 2.3 million people in the UK
are currently living with the diseasei. CHD develops when the arteries leading to the heart
narrow or become blocked, which can reduce blood flow, and cause chest pain and heart
The HeartFlow® FFRct Analysis is being supported by NHS England as part of the Innovation
and Technology Payment (ITP) programme to help physicians better diagnose coronary heart
disease. It provides the highest diagnostic performance compared to other commonly
available testsiii and is able to help physicians identify coronary disease often missed by other
tests, while reducing the need for unnecessary tests, such as an invasive diagnostic
angiogramiv. The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence
(NICE) estimates
HeartFlow can save the NHS approximately £9.1 million per yearv.
Under the ITP, the HeartFlow Analysis is currently available in 13 hospitals across the country
with a view of being rolled out in more than 35 hospitals by the year’s end.
Currently, it takes most hospitals several weeks to diagnose and develop a treatment plan for
coronary heart disease. HeartFlow may be able to help shorten this timeline.
Using deep learning and state-of-the-art data processing following a coronary computed
tomography (CT) scan, the HeartFlow Analysis creates a detailed digital 3D model of the
patient’s arteries. It then applies advanced algorithms to solve millions of complex equations
to assess the impact of any blockages on blood flow to the heart.
People experiencing chest pain should visit their GP or a rapid access chest pain clinic, where
a physician can request a CT scan. If needed, a HeartFlow Analysis can be applied to CT
scan results for patients.
Professor Tony Young, national clinical lead for innovation, NHS England, said:To
allow exciting innovations to flourish and spread, NHS England has footed the bill for a
select group of products, such as the HeartFlow Analysis which could reduce the need for
invasive tests, so patients can benefit faster.”
“From the very beginning the NHS has been at the forefront of driving innovation. As we look
to develop our long-term plan, the NHS will continue to champion world-leading technology.”
Dr. Timothy Fairbairn, MBChB, FRCP, Ph.D., consultant cardiologist, Liverpool Heart
and Chest Hospital, said: “This technology has exciting benefits for patients, physicians and
the NHS. It helps to diagnose coronary heart disease more quickly and more effectively whilst
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reducing reliance on more invasive procedures. In Liverpool, we have seen how the clinical
introduction of the HeartFlow technology is helping improve patient management by reducing
waiting times and positively influencing clinical decision making.”
“The national support for the HeartFlow technology shows the NHS’ commitment to innovation
and implementing new technologies that can help improve the patient experience while
delivering the best possible outcomes.”
In recognition of its innovative technology, HeartFlow was recently awarded the Advanced
Diagnostics, Genomics and Precision Medicine Award by the West Midlands Academic Health
Science Network (WMAHSN). The awards were established in 2016 to recognise and
celebrate the work of individuals and organisations in developing better healthcare and
increasing wealth for local people.
“We are proud to be working with the NHS to make this state-of-the-art technology available
in England, to help physicians diagnose and treat one of the leading causes of death in the
country,” said John H. Stevens, M.D., president and chief executive officer,
HeartFlow. “We will be working hard to ensure HeartFlow can help improve the overall patient
experience, by both helping physicians identify heart disease which may have otherwise been
missed and delivering significant cost benefits to the NHS.”
About HeartFlow, Inc.
HeartFlow, Inc. is a medical technology company transforming the way heart disease is
diagnosed and treated. Our non-invasive HeartFlow Analysis leverages deep learning to
create a personalized 3D model of the heart. By using this model, clinicians can better
evaluate the impact a blockage has on blood flow and determine the best treatment for
patients. Our technology is reflective of our Silicon Valley roots and incorporates decades of
scientific evidence with the latest advances in artificial intelligence. The HeartFlow Analysis is
commercially available in the United States, Canada, Europe and Japan. For more
information, visit www.heartflow.com.
Media Contact:
P: 0207 592 1200
i https://www.bhf.org.uk/-/media/.../heart-statistics/bhf-cvd-statistics---uk-factsheet.pdf
ii https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronary-heart-disease/
iii Driessen, et al. Presented at EuroPCR 2018. Nørgaard et al, Euro Radiology 2015; 25(8):2282-90
iv Douglas et al. PLATFORM Trial. Eur Heart J. 2015;36(47):3359-67
v https://www.nice.org.uk/about/what-we-do/into-practice/cost-saving-guidance
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