Microsoft AI for Health, NYC Health + Hospitals collaborate on heart health equity

NYC Health + Hospitals and Microsoft AI for Health are among the collaborators in a new project to promote heart health equity.

New York is the first city to take part in the AI4HealthyCities Health Equity Network, which employs data science techniques to shed light on the main drivers of cardiovascular disease, including social and environmental determinants of health such as housing, education and pollution. The program hopes urban policymakers will use the information to better target resources to boost heart health.

The Novartis Foundation created the project, whose New York City initiative will also include the New York University School of Global Public Health and city health authorities.

"Health equity is central to the mission and values of NYC Health + Hospitals," said health system President and CEO Mitchell Katz, MD, in a Sept. 19 Novartis Foundation news release. "Finding new ways to use data on social determinants of health and cardiovascular disease can help us inform our work and delivery on the promise of enabling all New Yorkers to live their healthiest lives."

Microsoft AI for Health will provide the data management and analytic tools.

"Combining anonymized population data from many different sources enables us to use machine learning to go down to street level in assessing levels of cardiovascular risk," stated Juan Lavista Ferres, chief data scientist at Microsoft. "If properly applied this could revolutionize preventive interventions in heart health."

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