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Digital & Innovation

Diagnostics company and local healthtech join forces to bring AI to pathology

Health Industry Hub | July 8, 2022 |
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Digital & Innovation: A joint venture to advance patient care by integrating digital pathology tools into daily clinical practice has been launched this week.

Sonic Healthcare and harrison.ai have appointed Stephen Ruffels as Chief Executive Officer of franklin.ai, bringing 20 years of technology leadership and medical device experience to the newly formed venture. Stephen, formerly harrison.ai’s Chief Operating Officer, will oversee a team of more than 70 specialist engineers, data scientists and clinical experts by the end of 2023 to rapidly develop and commercialise new artificial intelligence (AI) methodologies for pathology.

franklin.ai will provide pathologists with a digital assistant, using state-of-the-art AI technology in the form of tools that enhance diagnostic accuracy and efficiency. The venture combines harrison.ai’s depth of expertise and comprehensive AI methodologies with Sonic Healthcare’s global clinical experience and expertise to unlock the potential of digital pathology.
The new venture is supported by key hires, including General Manager Peter Dassos (formerly Director of Product at ResMed), and Head of Talent Celeste Kocabay (formerly Atlassian and Investible).

Stephen Ruffels, CEO of franklin.ai, said “The global healthcare system has changed, and today we face many new challenges that require ground-breaking technological and digital advancements. We have spent months building the right team to work hand-in-hand with pathologists to develop AI-powered tools that will augment their pivotal role at the heart of the healthcare system. We are excited to see the partnership between harrison.ai and Sonic Healthcare grow stronger by the day.”

Dr Aengus Tran, Co-Founder and CEO of harrison.ai, said “The launch of franklin.ai marks a milestone in our partnership with Sonic Healthcare. Combining the harrison.ai process and technology platform with Sonic Healthcare’s expertise is what we believe to be the fastest way to achieve our common goal of improving the capacity and quality of pathology services globally.

“We are also thrilled to announce that our former COO, Stephen Ruffels, has been appointed as CEO of franklin.ai. Stephen was one of the first to join us and has contributed enormously to the success of harrison.ai in the last two years. I am confident that Stephen will uphold the values of both harrison.ai and Sonic Healthcare with his leadership and expertise in medical devices and will drive our mission in the pathology sector.”

Dr Colin Goldschmidt, CEO of Sonic Healthcare, added “I am delighted with our new partnership, one which will strengthen our digital pathology endeavours on a global scale. Laboratory medicine informs almost every aspect of modern medicine, especially the diagnosis of cancer. With franklin.ai, we are taking a big step forward in the field of digital pathology, and we look forward to playing a leadership role in this important new area of modern medicine.”


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