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AI-driven COPD assessment tool to launch across Oxford



People at risk of severe respiratory illness will now have access to the latest and most advanced technology available to assess them for Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD).

The development follows the nationwide introduction of the regulated AI technology for COPD, utilising the N-Tidal device.

The technology combines N-Tidal’s high-resolution CO2 sensor data with an AI platform designed to measure variations in lung function that could indicate COPD.

The medical tool can provide an indication of a patient’s COPD risk within a matter of minutes.

TidalSense CEO, Dr Ameera Patel, said: ““The way patients are assessed for respiratory diseases needs reform.

“We desperately need to arm primary care doctors with accurate, easy-to-perform tests that enable the early and accurate diagnosis of patients, at the point at which they present with symptoms.

“In doing so, we can reduce healthcare inefficiencies and costs, reduce delays to diagnosis, reduce hospitalisation costs, and improve the quality of life for patients.

“As someone who waited 10 years to be diagnosed with severe asthma, I know too well how it feels to struggle to breathe and suffer attacks.”

The technology will initially be piloted in Oxford as part of a collaboration with Healthier Oxford City Network, a primary care network comprising four practices.

Over the course of the next 12 weeks, GPs, practice nurses and pharmacists will employ the technologu to evaluate up to 600 patients for potential COPD.

When possible, the outcomes will be compared to spirometry, the existing diagnostic test, which is currently in short supply across the UK.

The N-Tidal device, developed by health tech company TidalSense, comfortably assesses patients through one minute of normal, relaxed breathing.

The test takes under five minutes in comparison to spirometry which takes up to 30 minutes per appointment.

Previous usability studies show that 98 per cent of patients found the N-Tidal device very easy to use.

Over the next six to nine months, in collaboration with researchers, including academics from the Nuffield Department of Primary Care Health Sciences at the University of Oxford, the AI technology will move towards becoming automated diagnostic test, looking to replace spirometry in certain NHS diagnostic clinical pathways.

Clinical studies have already demonstrated the N-Tidal device’s ability to diagnose severe COPD with over 91 per cent accuracy from a single breath recording.

Dr. Helen Ashdown, GP Clinical Lecturer at the Nuffield Department of Primary Care Health Sciences, University of Oxford, said: “The launch of the COPD AI technology and N-Tidal device across Oxford presents an exciting opportunity to change the way the diagnostic pathway for COPD operates.

“This potentially groundbreaking medical device may be able to provide clinicians with a faster and more accurate assessment of patients’ lung function.

“Early intervention is crucial for managing COPD effectively and, with the N-Tidal device, we have the potential to transform the way we diagnose and manage this chronic respiratory condition, leading to improved patient outcomes and better care.”

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