Case study from Innovation: early diagnosis in community settings

A handheld echocardiogram diagnoses heart failure and reduces waiting times

8 December, 2022

What is the aim?

A point-of-care handheld transthoracic echocardiogram can produce images to diagnose heart failure with reduced ejection fraction (HFrEF) and analyse them with artificial intelligence.1 The handheld echocardiogram is accompanied by a clinical dashboard that presents information on the treatment needed.2

What has been achieved?

There is an ongoing clinical trial (OPERA) using the handheld echocardiogram device to diagnose heart failure.2 In Scotland, since January 2021, over 700 people with suspected heart failure have been referred from community settings for further examination with this device. So far, results have been promising, with a reduction of waiting times from 12 months to less than 12 weeks, allowing treatment to be initiated sooner.2


  1. Optimising a digital diagnostic pathway for heart failure in the community (OPERA) [online]. Available from: [Accessed 22/07/22]
  2. West of Scotland Innovation Hub. Early diagnostic heart failure (Opera) [online]. Available from: [Accessed 22/07/22]
Back to the Project
The Heart Failure Policy Network is an independent, multidisciplinary platform made possible with financial support from AstraZeneca and Roche Diagnostics. The content produced by the Network is not biased toward any specific treatment or therapy. All outputs are guided and endorsed by the Network’s members. All members provide their time for free. The Network is hosted by The Health Policy Partnership .