Prior to the pandemic,the company’s software already included a 3D image-based search engine (SEARCH) that detects disease patterns in lung CTs, including those present in COVID-19 patients. While lung CT scans have an important role in the diagnostic process for common pneumonias, its exact impact for COVID-19 related pneumonia is still being researched by radiology experts (contextflow is actively participating in this research and already provides radiologists with COVID-19-relevant information when evaluating scans of potential COVID-19 patients). Still, according to Senior Consulting Radiologist from Vienna General Hospital (AKH) Helmut Prosch, ”Radiologists could particularly benefit from the ability to identify potential COVID-19 patients faster, particularly those requiring the ICU.”
contextflow’s current investors (IST Cube, APEX Ventures, Nina Capital, Crista Galli Ventures) immediately understood the value that further expansion of the company’s capabilities could provide in the near future. Together with a new investor, Novacaptial, they provided additional financial resources to speed up the development of COVID-19 features, building upon the software’s solid foundation as tools that improve. “contextflow’s agility within the current healthcare emergency demonstrates their resilience and ability to rapidly provide their technology and expertise to contribute in a crisis like this.” says Andreas Riegler, Managing Partner at APEX Ventures.
Marta Gaia Zanchi, Founder and Managing Partner at Nina Capital continues: “Speed is key, and at a time when many startups are struggling, it’s impressive to see contextflow reacting quickly and not only starting to develop new features but actually delivering relevant technology to the point of care across institutions.”
contextflow’s software is already up and running in hospitals across Europe. The COVID-19 features are for research use only and currently provided free of charge to as many hospitals and clinics as possible in order to support radiologists and thus the health system during the ongoing pandemic. Explains CEO & Co-Founder Markus Holzer, “Thanks to our existing technology and immediate communication with our partner hospitals, we were able to quickly adapt our system, working together to provide value to radiologists in these unique circumstances, and in addition, bring our system to new sites in need within weeks.”
contextflow is a spin-off of the Medical University of Vienna, Technical University of Vienna and European research project Khresmoi. The company was founded in 2016 by a team of AI and medical imaging experts and is currently in its proof of concept phase with 10 partner hospitals and clinics throughout Europe. www.contextflow.com