New partnership paves the way for AI-enabled hospitals

A new partnership between the London Medical Imaging and AI Centre for Value-Based Healthcare and digital transformation consultancy Answer is paving the way for AI-enabled hospitals and the future of patient care.

Artificial Intelligence (AI) platforms will be developed to support clinicians with faster diagnosis and treatments, personalised therapies, and effective screening across a range of conditions and procedures.

Federated learning is being employed to address the long-standing issues surrounding privacy, security and anonymity when collating the large volumes of sensitive patient data traditionally required to teach machines.

Commenting on plans, Beverley Bryant, chief digital Information officer for Guy’s and St Thomas’NHS Foundation Trust & King’s College Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, and senior responsible owner for the London Medical Imaging and AI Centre for Value-Based Healthcare, said: “This is a unique programme to implement AI at scale within the NHS. Our partnership with Answer is another key step toward deploying this open-source technology in clinical environments. Answer is a respected digital health agency, and we hope that our partnership and shared success will provide a springboard for widespread AI deployment across the NHS to benefit patients.”

The new project will provide the NHS with a fully open-source solution that comprises a Federated Learning interoperability platform capable of ensuring machine learning models can be trained without data ever having to leave the Trust’s secure environment, and an AI Deployment Engine which will enable AI to be deployed safely within the Trusts.

Professor Seb Ourselin, deputy director of the London Medical Imaging and AI Centre for Value-Based Healthcare, and head of school of Biomedical Engineering & Imaging Sciences at King’s College London, said: “Public and private partnerships are critical to bring secure AI-powered innovations into the NHS to improve patient care. For the first time, with the expertise of Answer working together with the AI Centre, we will propel an open-source federated learning platform and deployment engine that will ensure data remains safe and stays within each Trust. This project has the capacity to be truly transformative. ”

The London Medical Imaging and AI Centre for Value-Based Healthcare was recently awarded a £16 million DHSC grant by the Office for Life Sciences to enable its programme of artificial intelligence research within the NHS, with the aim of providing more innovative and accessible healthcare solutions to the public. The grant also facilitates the consortium’s significant expansion from four NHS Trusts to 10, and new academic and industry partnerships.

Richard Pugmire, director at Answer, said: “Answer has a deep history of partnership with the NHS on nationally significant innovation that advances personalised and digitally-enabled healthcare provision across the NHS. Alongside our exciting work with NHS England’s genomic medicine service, we are thrilled to be part of the journey that brings AI to the forefront of patient care in a new and meaningful way. The AI programme is hugely ambitious, and the partnership allows us to bring the best technical, clinical and academic minds together to showcase a truly robust solution, capable of changing the way healthcare is provided for many years to come.”


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