IRIA and CHS collaborate to introduce the first AI-based Covid-19 and TB screening systems at international airports in India

New Delhi (India), April 1: The Indian Radiological & Imaging Association (IRIA), in collaboration with Corporeal Health Solutions (CHS), a Chennai-based company that specialises in providing innovative, cognitive Artificial Intelligence-based technology to the healthcare industry, is proud to present state-of-the-art screening systems that streamline COVID-19 and tuberculosis protocols at international airports. Named CHOCO, this innovative product is the first-of-its-kind to be introduced in Asia. It was inaugurated at Kempegowda International Airport, Bengaluru (BLR Airport) by Dr. Pushpraj Bhatele, President of IRIA, on 25th March 2022 in the presence of numerous dignitaries.

The enhanced screening solutions combine state-of-the-art Artificial Intelligence and chest X-rays, and deliver results within nanoseconds. Various imaging modalities are used, and potential abnormalities that may not otherwise be detected beyond a clinical setting are instantly traced. This dramatically reduces the standard passenger waiting time of hours, and ensures a queue-free environment at airports. Additionally, the last two years of the pandemic have shown that existing screening systems at international ports of entry are inadequate, and CHOCO eliminates the time and cost issues that have so far prevented effective detections that can prevent travel-related infections in the larger community.

Since the beginning of the pilot study of four weeks conducted by IRIA in collaboration with Bangalore International Airport Ltd (BIAL), over 1500 passengers have volunteered and were successfully screened at BLR Airport using the new technology. It was found that interruptions to the passengers’ journeys were extremely minimal, with the entire procedure taking under five minutes per passenger. The results were accurate and promising, detecting communicable diseases even in asymptomatic patients. The radiation exposure was also found to be minimal. CHOCO offers a viable method for airports around the world to streamline their passengers’ medical screening cost-effectively and efficiently.

Speaking on the launch of CHOCO, Dr. Mona Bhatia, Coordinator of the AI Committee at IRIA, says, “IRIA is a premiere institution in India and is always looking for ways to improve healthcare. During the pandemic, we observed the problems faced in the screenings at the entry and exit ports and saw the need for a solution that was faster and economically viable. Thus, IRIA joined hands with CHS, together with the help of BIAL, to come up with this innovative solution. We believe CHOCO’s enhanced screening solution will inspire ports around the world to implement the same.”

Dr. (Major) Vimal Raj, Imaging Diagnostic Adviser at CHS, adds, “CHS is a health-tech company that is changing the way technology is being used for delivering healthcare and diagnosing diseases. We have leveraged our expertise in Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning to create CHOCHO, thus improving the speed and accuracy of the entire airport screening process, which has become a necessity during the pandemic. Multiple trials across the country have shown exemplary results, and our pilot study has become a valuable case study that proves the viability of the product.”

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