Artificial Intelligence Innovation for the Detection of COVID-19

By Adi Permana

Editor Vera Citra Utami

BANDUNG, – Institut Teknologi Bandung (ITB) has participated in playing its significant role in tackling the COVID-19 crisis, one of them being in the technology field. ITB has made multi-disciplinary collaborations with other institutions to create innovations in an attempt to restore from this pandemic and increase the institution’s capabilities and contributions.

One of the innovations ITB has created is an artificial intelligence (AI) to detect COVID-19 through the use of CT-scan and X-Ray. This statement was delivered by Prof. Bambang Riyanti Trilaksono who is the head of sub-task force for AI and Informatics Innovation team specifying on COVID-19 detection from the Agency of Assessment and Application of Technology (BPPT) during the ITB Talks event held on Wednesday (12/8/2020).

The professor from the control system, robotics, and AI focused research group at STEI ITB explained that AI in itself is a computer science field which studies how to create computers that possess the intelligence known to be innate for human beings, such as the ability to identify patterns, the ability to learn, and the ability to make decisions. “Other than AI, there is the term ‘machine learning’ in which computers are able to become intelligent based on the examples given to purposefully able to classify and make decisions,” said Prof. Bambang.

He added that to make contributions in facing this pandemic, BPPT has formed a task force team which conducts research on innovations in responding to the unprecedented outbreak. One of the sub-task forces formed was the AI division, with the responsibility of detecting COVID-19. The team consists of multidisciplinary institutions such as BPPT, higher education institutions, professional organizations, and startups. In addition, this particular team consists of members from diversified backgrounds of expertise such as ICT, biomedicine, radiology, medicine, and security.

Prof. Bambang continued by explaining the importance of AI. “Why AI? This is due to the fact that we need a test which complements the usual rapid test we have conducted and solve the shortage of medical workers in hospitals throughout Indonesia,” he said.

He added that there are some components developed in the testing for COVID-19. First is to build an AI model with machine learning that processes CT-scan data to identify radiological findings that may appear. The second one is by utilizing deep learning which processes X-ray images, and the use of data mining to enable medical workers and radiologists to examine X-ray and CT-scan clinical data in a system which will be further processed by AI. The third component is the decision assistance system which is based on the knowledge growing system specifying in processing non image data.

To be able to use this application, the first thing to do is to log into the application. Thereafter, we have to add patient’s data and fill in the available symptom data. The final step is to upload an image of the CT-scan to be processed later so that it is evident whether a patient is COVID-19 positive or negative.

As a closing remark, Prof. Bambang noted that the collaboration carried out by the team is multi-institutional, multidisciplinary, and team members have never met in person or face to face prior to this project. “Even though we have never met before, we managed to successfully create innovations. The key to this success is the reciprocal need, knowledge in other fields of study, and the will to synergize,” he added.

Reporter: Deo Fernando
Translator: Rizvika Rahmita Salim