IBM Watson for Oncology is helping KPJ Healthcare fight cancer

Cancer has always been one of the bigger medical scares and according to the Malaysian National Cancer Registry, cancer is the third most common cause of death among Malaysians. Now, KPJ Healthcare has taken a move that will help its Oncologists better deliver evidence-based cancer treatment options with IBM Watson trained by Memorial Sloan Kettering (MSK).

“This latest collaboration with KPJ in Malaysia further expands IBM’s growing footprint of well-known healthcare institutions that are using Watson in the Asia Pacific region,” said Chong Chye Neo, Managing Director, IBM Malaysia. “KPJ is on the cutting edge in bringing cognitive computing into the clinical workflow to augment and scale the ability of their clinicians to bring quality care to their patients.”

By analyzing high volumes of data and processing information more like a human than a computer, Watson can understand natural language, generate hypotheses based on evidence, and learn as it goes. Watson for Oncology can summarize key medical attributes of a patient, and provide information to oncologists to help them deliver treatment options.

Watson for Oncology also provides a large corpus of medical evidence for a physician to consider, drawing on more than 300 medical journals, more than 200 textbooks, and nearly 15 million pages of text to provide insights about different treatment options.

IBM and MSK have been putting Watson for Oncology’s training on the fast track and the technology can now help clinicians in developing treatment plans for breast, lung, colorectal, cervical, ovarian, gastric, prostate and bladder cancers.

In Malaysia, KPJ is the first provider of private healthcare services to adopt Watson for Oncology. This will be undertaken at its five specialist hospitals, namely KPJ Damansara Specialist Hospital (KPJ Damansara), KPJ Ampang Puteri Specialist Hospital (KPJ Ampang Puteri), KPJ Johor Specialist Hospital (KPJ Johor), KPJ Ipoh Specialist Hospital (KPJ Ipoh) and KPJ Sabah Specialist Hospital (KPJ Sabah).

“We believe that introducing Watson for Oncology will increase KPJ’s capability to provide cancer patients with treatment options that are based on facts and medical evidence,” said KPJ Healthcare President and Managing Director, Dato’ Amiruddin Abdul Satar.

He added, “This investment in cognitive technologies is in line with KPJ’s vision to become an oncology hub in Malaysia and the region as our clinicians seek to continually deliver excellent care to the 3 million patients we serve each year.”

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