Artificial Intelligence versus Corona
Under the auspices of KI.NRW the research project »corona.KEX.net« is developing an intelligent early detection system to prevent supply bottlenecks for medical protective equipment
The press release on the research project corona.KEX.net on the occasion of the presentation of the funding decision (10.12.2020)
2.99 million euros of funding for greater resilience in healthcare
Ensuring healthcare infrastructure even in times of crisis: Under the auspices of the Artificial Intelligence Competence Platform North Rhine-Westphalia KI.NRW, scientists in the research project corona.KEX.net are developing an AI-based early warning system to prevent supply bottlenecks for medical protective equipment. The aim is to ensure the supply of hospitals, doctors’ practices and care facilities with articles of medical need even in the event of short-term shortages and to enable cost-efficient action during the pandemic. In addition to the consortium leader KEX Knowledge Exchange AG, experts from industry and science are working on the development of the early warning system. The funding decision, worth around three million euros, was handed over to initiator Toni Drescher, CEO of KEX Knowledge Exchange AG, by Digital Minister Prof. Dr. Andreas Pinkwart on December 10.
The early warning system corona.KEX.net
In order for facilities such as hospitals and doctors’ offices to be able to provide the best possible treatment services even in times of crisis, a reliable and robust medical procurement infrastructure is needed. This includes the ability to order large quantities of quality-assured protective equipment at short notice without incurring long delivery times and excessive costs. The importance of this was particularly evident in the early phase of the Corona pandemic. The project aims to develop an intelligent early warning system that can predict potential supply shortages and thus strengthen the resilience of medical facilities.
The early warning system is being designed as an AI-based extension of existing procurement platforms. Orders placed by medical facilities via the platform are analyzed in real time with the help of the system. If the algorithm notices that certain items are in particularly high demand and a significant value of order numbers is exceeded, the early warning system sounds the alarm. Suppliers can then be informed in good time about new demand situations. In the future, supplier data could also be used to calculate the status of production and supply chains.
Voices on the research project
Dr. Christian Temath
“We support AI lighthouse projects funded by the state with the umbrella brand ‘Flagships powered by KI.NRW’. As a strategic partner, we strengthen efficient technology transfer and close cooperation between SMEs, startups, universities, colleges and research institutions in NRW. corona.KEX.net shows that there are promising applications for AI technology in the healthcare sector as well and contributes as an innovative AI project to the management of the Corona pandemic.”
“Together with partners from industry and science, we will provide targeted support for the digitization of hospitals and care facilities to strengthen the healthcare system in line with demand – even beyond pandemic times.”
Flagships powered by KI.NRW
Operating under the brand “Flagships powered by KI.NRW”, the Artificial Intelligence Competence Platform North Rhine-Westphalia supports projects funded by the state as AI lighthouse projects in order to support efficient technology transfer and close cooperation between SMEs, startups, universities, colleges and research institutions in NRW. Under the strategic auspices of KI.NRW, the competence platform provides communications support for the projects and positions NRW as an AI location by marketing the results at European level. One focus is on the sustainable transfer and further utilization of the project results.
Alongside the “Certified AI” project, corona.KEX.net is another flagship project of the Artificial Intelligence Competence Platform North Rhine-Westphalia. For the implementation of corona.KEX.net, several institutions from North Rhine-Westphalia have joined forces in a consortium under the auspices of KI.NRW. In addition to the consortium leader KEX Knowledge Exchange AG, other companies from North Rhine-Westphalia and research institutions are working on the development of the early warning system.
More information on the “Certified AI” flagship: