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IBM forms medical-imaging collaborative to battle major diseases

The Watson Health initiative taps "cognitive imaging" tech to help doctors worldwide tackle breast cancer, diabetes and eye and heart disease and more.


IBM is using the power of its Watson supercomputer, "cognitive imaging" and artificial intelligence to help doctors better diagnose patients facing major diseases.

The tech giant on Wednesday announced its Watson Health medical-imaging collaborative, which includes 16 members from health systems, academic medical centers and imaging-tech vendors.

IBM said participants could train its Watson for early detection of ailments like breast cancer, heart disease, diabetes, eye problems and other overlooked health conditions. Cognitive computing and imaging lets health care providers draw insights from massive volumes of sharable data, such as electronic health records, lab results and other reports.

"Our collaboration allows us to help shape the future of medicine by joining efforts to create the tools which will be vital for physicians to make correct decisions based on evidence and complex sources of clinical data," said Dr. Jack Ziffer, chief medical officer for Baptist Health South Florida.