While next generation speech recognition has the potential to further transform radiology, no change comes without some degree of cost and complexity. But with rising backlogs, a culture of litigation, and growing risk for radiologists in the UK, the costs of doing nothing could be significantly greater.
As with every facet of healthcare, radiology departments are no strangers to the idea of controlled risk. A delay or discrepancy in a radiology report always has the potential for severe consequences and a domino effect.
However, with radiologists facing increased pressure to keep up with NHS resource shortages and impossible workloads, that risk is rapidly growing. As a result, entire Trusts and healthcare providers need new ways to reduce errors, deliver consistency, and drive risk down.
The cost of errors and delays to the NHS
At the most fundamental level, issues with radiology reporting – often due to workloads, reporting accuracy, or radiologist cognitive overload – expose Trusts to litigation.
According to NHS statistics, 12,629 clinical claims were made against the NHS in 2020/21. The cost of these claims to the NHS was around £2 billion.
From emergency care to oncology, departments encountered more litigation – and higher compensation amounts – than ever before. In fact, the number of clinical claims was 15% higher than five years ago and 133% higher than 9 years prior. The level of that litigation is not decreasing.
Radiology also reported a significant increase in claims between 2015/16 and 2020/21 – a growth of almost 10%, reflecting 376% growth over the past 9 years. This may have been partly driven by increased usage and reporting – but also the widespread staff shortages, overworked radiologists, and a backlog that was intensified by the pandemic.
Worse, this financial cost is only a reflection of the more human cost – an impact on patient care, standards of practice, and outcomes.
How radiologists are addressing risk
For radiologists, mitigating this significant financial and human cost does not just mean accepting that mistakes happen, but taking proactive steps to reduce the likelihood at every stage. Reporting accuracy is vital, as is checking the standard of accuracy.
Clinical analytics is a growing priority around the world, with signed-off reports analysed for accuracy, errors and outcomes like referrals. In some instances, this data can be used to drive radiologist performance, flagging issues like too few or too many referrals, or identifying overdue exams to avoid adverse outcomes. In this context of increased scrutiny, high quality report data is essential.
While not new, a layer of peer reporting is another way to significantly raise standards in radiology. The Royal College of Radiologists published a detailed report in 2014 on quality assurance and peer feedback, outlining expectations that at least 5% of radiology reports should be screened by peers – that was 8 years ago.
Time has not made this best practice any less challenging in an environment where there is a severe lack of peers to do the reviewing and the profession continues to already be overworked. This kind of initiative depends on the availability of radiologists, free from the pressure of an endless backlog. It also requires reports to be clear and consistent in their format via structured reporting.
However, the right digital approach to reporting can help – and voice-AI driven speech recognition can play a key role.
Speech recognition reduces risk for radiology
Highly accurate, AI-powered speech recognition has the potential to reduce or stop the domino effect of errors at the source. Augnito doesn’t just give radiologists a way to report faster and with fewer errors, but also embracing standards through consistently structured reporting.
Built in partnership with clinicians and radiologists, Augnito delivers 99.3% accuracy out of the box, available on any device: desktop, web, mobile or integrated with existing clinical systems. Clinicians can work however and wherever they need to – without compromising on reporting quality.
Augnito is also designed to support secure sharing, empowering radiologists to adopt more peer review as part of their daily routine. And, because it’s a 100% cloud-hosted solution, there’s no complexity in implementation or ongoing management and maintenance of hardware and infrastructure – which can add unnecessary risk to data loss, costs, and reporting down-time.
Radiologists – and any other department – will always face a measure of risk when it comes to their reporting. Augnito brings increased control to every radiologist, significantly reducing risk – personally, professionally, to the Trust and to patients.
[London, 30 August 2022] – Augnito cloud-based speech recognition technology highlights why data security is a concern for radiologists and NHS Trusts.
While the healthcare sector and the NHS face increased pressure to adopt new technology, Scribetech (UK) Ltd, developers of Augnito, a clinical AI-powered speech recognition solution, reports widespread concerns over security and patient data.
According to Scribetech, security is a key barrier to adopting speech recognition – despite its potential to accelerate reporting time, drive accuracy, and enable radiologists to deal with a significant backlog.
Shiraz Austin, Managing Director at Scribetech (UK) Ltd and Co-Founder for Augnito, stated: “The security question is one we encounter a lot. The way radiologists work needs to evolve, but Trusts have understandable concerns about any new technology and how it handles sensitive patient data. That’s why security and compliance has been key to Augnito’s development from the very start.”
The most common concerns from Trusts around new technology cross three key areas:
1. The transfer of data to the cloud – specifically how data is protected against unauthorised access in storage and
2. How data is used to improve AI – and how information is anonymized and encrypted before it is fed into any machine
3. Consistency in compliance – including where data is transferred during processing, particularly where this may
include multiple regulatory jurisdictions
Austin continued: “It’s not enough for cloud technology providers to simply say they are secure. We’ve taken proactive steps to embed security at every level of Augnito, so it’s a solution that Trusts – and radiologists – can really feel confident about using.”
Augnito is a next-generation speech recognition solution, available on desktops, mobile devices and web browsers, or integrated with existing clinical systems. This diverse range of application/s is supported by industry leading security and compliance, including:
– Data security, quality control, and management processes certified under DSPT, Cyber Essentials+, UKAS ISO 9001,
ISO 14001, BSI – ISO 27001
– A speech recognition engine hosted by Amazon Web Services (AWS) in the UK
– Anonymised, encrypted data at rest, stored exclusively in the UK and compliant with GDPR
– Automated backup options in AWS to prevent data loss
As a result, radiologists can adopt speech recognition without compromising on the safety of data and, ultimately, patients. However, Austin also reports measurable improvements to data integrity, made possible by Augnito: “Augnito keeps data safe as standard. But it also brings new levels of accuracy and consistency to reports, through both our 99.3% accurate AI and templates. Compared to manually typed reports, which are prone to errors and mistakes, Augnito is actually driving higher report quality. All while lessening the burden on radiologists and helping key diagnostic decisions be made sooner.”
Note to editors
About Scribetech and Augnito
Scribetech (UK) Ltd. is a clinical voice-AI solution and disruptive technology provider. Founded in 2001, the company has accumulated two decades of experience as an approved supplier of clinical transcription services to the NHS and private healthcare providers. This expertise has been combined with eight years of AI research and development partnerships established with engineers, analysts, and clinicians. The result is Augnito: an innovative, secure, cloud-based clinical speech recognition solution. Augnito brings seamless speech-enablement to daily workflows. All with 99.3% at-the-cursor accuracy, support for multiple medical specialities, and no need for voice profile training.
Visit www.scribetech.co.uk/2022/07/31/the-role-of-speech-recognition-in-radiology-security-risk-and-compliance/ for the full blog post relating to this media alert. Contact [email protected] for more product details.
For further press-media information, interview opportunities or accompanying graphics please contact: Georgina Pavelin, Mixed Media – [email protected]
[London, 24 August 2022] – Augnito’s latest blog addresses the current challenges within radiology and poses efficiency solutions to manage the backlogs with direct improvements on patient care.
Understaffing is a real challenge across the NHS, however within radiology this is nothing new, the pandemic only compounding an existing problem which continues to await solution. At this time, radiology continues to be severely understaffed, resulting in scan backlogs, while falling below safe staffing quotas making it impossible to keep up with demand. Those in post are at risk of burn out, with staff morale affected and many planning to cut their hours or leave the NHS. The Royal College of Radiologists’ estimates today’s consultant capacity at just a third of the required workforce. Without intervention, that shortfall is expected to hit 44% by 2025.1
Shiraz Austin, Managing Director at Scribetech (UK) Ltd and Co-Founder of Augnito, stated: “We are at a critical point across the NHS with unprecedented staff shortages and resulting backlogs. Not only is this alarming for healthcare professionals working to mitigate the risks, but for patients, particularly within radiology where early diagnosis can quite literally save lives. Without appropriate staffing resources, patient care is delayed, therefore diagnosis takes longer, as does resulting treatment. Every day that passes without a solution only adds to the workload, scan backlogs and staff pressure.
Until there are more consultants in training and protection of existing staff on the front-line an immediate solution is required, a new way of working needs to be implemented to aid backlogs, give visual results and offer well needed support.”
Scribetech offers expert health-tech and speech recognition (SR) advice to mitigate risks; the latest blog tackles individual efficiency, support for radiologists to deliver exceptional care to patients and the long-term effect of efficient reporting using the company’s SR solution, Augnito.
Austin continued: “Technology is ever evolving and providing access to the latest AI voice driven clinical speech recognition solution will support the backlogs whilst mitigating the increase in reporting demand. The right technology helps staff do more in less time, more accurately, and more flexibly supporting today’s workstyle.”
Augnito AI-driven speech recognition accurately generates reports. Available in the cloud with no need for additional hardware or software, Augnito gives every radiologist a much faster and more flexible way of working – one that helps accurate diagnoses happen sooner.
Today, accurate speech recognition can lessen the burden on radiologists, improve workloads, and increase wellbeing and workforce retention. So perhaps the real question is ‘why the delay, what are you waiting for?’
For further information, interview opportunities or accompanying graphics please contact: Georgina Pavelin, Mixed Media – [email protected]
Scribetech (UK) Ltd is a clinical voice solutions innovator, fusing 20 years of transcription and digital dictation services to the NHS, speech-to-text and clinical coding solutions for the healthcare sector, and its own speech recognition engine and advanced voice AI technology.
Created by Scribetech, Augnito is its secure, cloud-based, AI-driven clinical speech recognition product suite. It offers fast, easy ways to capture live clinical data on any device with 99% accuracy, support for multiple medical specialties, and no need for voice profile training. Augnito brings seamless speech recognition to daily workflows and third-party clinical systems, turning medical information into clinical documentation and making healthcare intelligence securely accessible everywhere.