Emergency rooms nationwide have many things in common.

Of course, they are the front line in trying to save people's lives. But they also see a lot of chronic or common illnesses, things like acute respiratory distress (ARDS), pneumonia, and sepsis (blood infection).

These are things that Artificial Intelligence can help to diagnose and treat in a very efficient manner.

Researchers from Intermountain Health are helping to lead a national consortium of healthcare systems and hospitals in a new $51.6 million federally-funded initiative that will use advanced technologies – including AI and machine learning – to improve treatment for patients with ARDS, pneumonia, and sepsis – the most common and devastating conditions found in critically ill patients.

Hundreds of thousands of people infected with the COVID virus during the pandemic who were hospitalized and in critical condition ultimately died from these conditions.

ARDS, pneumonia, and sepsis, together kills hundreds of thousands of people in the United States each year. ARDS and sepsis are most often caused by pneumonia, which is a syndrome itself, with poor results: up to 50% mortality rate, and for survivors there’s often a reduced quality of life and an ongoing risk for early death.

Through a major $51.6 million grant from the National Institutes of Health, researchers from 22 hospitals from across the nation will identify what makes these patients different, which will allow researchers to find targeted treatments for them.

Intermountain Health is leading one of six groups of health systems that make up the consortium, which plans to bring together many of the nation’s experts who treat critical care illnesses.

Intermountain physicians and researchers will explain details of this coordinated national effort on Tuesday and the impact this project will have on Utahns who experience these conditions.

The press conference/lecture will be at the Intermountain Health Transformation Center at 5026 South State Street in Murray, beginning at 11:15 a.m. and will also stream at https://intermountainhealthcare.org/.

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