Siemens Healthineers has announced a research partnership with the University of California San Francisco (UCSF) to create the first-ever carbon-neutral radiology imaging service.

The organisations will focus on making radiological imaging greener and improving access to quality imaging in Northern California.

The collaboration will leverage Siemens Smart Infrastructure solutions to track the power usage of UCSF’s radiology equipment.

Siemens’ new MAGNETOM Free.Max (0.55T) magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scanner will also be used at UCSF to improve accessibility and sustainability in medical imaging.

Additionally, the organisations will investigate methods for reducing the amount of energy consumed by MRI machines in standby mode and determine how Siemens Healthineers’ tools can be used to make eco-friendly scanners.

UCSF Department of Radiology and Biomedical Imaging professor and chair Christopher Hess said: “Health care is estimated to be responsible for up to 5% of global net emissions, and imaging almost certainly contributes to an outsized share of that total.

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“At the same time, imaging is becoming increasingly central to medical decision-making. Our goal is to find a way for radiology departments worldwide to reduce our environmental footprint. I can think of no better place than UCSF to begin the pioneering work.”

Siemens Healthineers and UCSF will also explore ways to integrate artificial intelligence (AI) in quantitative imaging, radiology, and clinical data and image integration.

Siemens Healthineers Americas head and president David Pacitti said: “Siemens Healthineers is very excited about the innovation partnership with UCSF to bring MRI to places it has never been before, advancing the access and quality of radiological imaging in Northern California, while simultaneously working towards sustainable, eco-friendly healthcare.”