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Michael D. Abramoff

The Power List 2019 – Inventors


Michael D. Abramoff

The Robert C. Watzke, MD, Professor of Ophthalmology and Visual Sciences; University of Iowa, USA, Founder and CEO, IDx

What is the best part of being an ophthalmologist?

Vision is incredibly important to most people, so being able, at a vulnerable time, to help patients retain or improve their vision is incredibly rewarding. In addition, the eye is such a unique organ, as it is the only part of the brain we can access relatively easily.

What motivates you?

Making high quality healthcare available to all, by using autonomous Artificial Intelligence to improve healthcare productivity. Increased productivity allows much better access at much lower cost.

What is your proudest achievement?

My proudest achievement is getting FDA clearance for an autonomous AI system that detects diabetic retinopathy in primary care. I spent years researching and developing the system, so it is incredibly exciting and fulfilling to see it reach patients. As an ophthalmologist, I see too many patients with needless vision loss from diabetic retinopathy. Using autonomous AI in primary care increases patient access to testing, potentially preventing vision loss in the millions of Americans with diabetes who need to be tested annually.

What do you hope to achieve in the next ten years?

In the next ten years, I want to see the widespread adoption of autonomous AI in primary care in retail settings. There is so much potential here to improve quality and accessibility of care. I also want to receive regulatory approval for the other AI applications my company IDx is working on for glaucoma and macular degeneration, so we can touch even more patients’ lives. It's all about reaching as many patients as possible to have the biggest impact on healthcare.


Part of the Power List 2019

Find out more

This year we have 50 of the best inventors, mentors, emerging leaders, surgical pioneers and champions of change. With our “Five Top Tens,” we hope to showcase the best, the brightest, and the most forward-thinking that ophthalmology has to offer.

Go to The Power List 2019

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