Edit Content
BBC TV & Podcast Feature, Published in February 2024

The BBC highlight Jacaranda’s partnered project around AI-assisted ultrasound

Learn more about how AI-assisted ultrasound could benefit millions of expecting mothers across Kenya on BBC iPlayer or the BBC Tech Life podcast.

Ultrasound helps track a baby’s safe development and spot complications earlier, but only 16% of pregnant women in Kenya receive one. Traditional ultrasound machines are costly, stunted by power outages, and require specialists with years of experience to conduct exams and interpret images.

Jacaranda is partnering with Google to bridge this divide. Over eight months, we’ll be conducting exploratory research to understand the current approach to ultrasound delivery in Kenya, and explore how new AI tools could support point-of-care ultrasound for pregnant women.

Unlike their larger predecessors, the new devices are handheld, do not rely on a continuous power source, and are simple enough that assisting nurses, and technicians could perform full examinations without the steep learning curve in ultrasound scanning. AI will simplify the otherwise lengthy and complex process of acquiring and interpreting ultrasound images, helping rapidly identify information like gestational age in expecting mothers.

The devices are currently being trialed among nurses at Jacaranda’s sister organization, Jacaranda Maternity, with the aim of training the AI model to the Kenyan context, and eventually scaling these to be available in lower-access settings, such as rural health clinics.

Share this resource