UK Government to invest £250m in AI for health initiatives

  • The Department of Health has announced plans to invest £250m in developing new artificial intelligence systems for the National Health Service.

    The investment will be used to create a new National Artificial Intelligence Lab with the goal of using AI to help solve some of the major problems currently facing the NHS. It follows from recent advances in AI and machine learning, and an ongoing trend toward a more personalised form of medicine.

    Projects the lab will be tackling will include improving cancer screening and identifying patients most at risk of developing conditions such as dementia or heart disease. The bottleneck in many of the screening and diagnostic processes at the moment is often the availability of experts on particular conditions to interpret scans and test results, but diagnosing people based on data is a task that's well suited for AI.

    The lab will also be looking at ways to optimise the use of resources across the NHS to reduce costs, such as automating admin tasks that are currently done by a person. Optimising scheduling could also give doctors more time with patients without an additional cost, or allow each doctor to work on a larger case load.

    Health Secretary Matt  Hancock commented on the lab: "We are on the cusp of a huge health tech revolution that could transform patient experience by making the NHS a truly predictive, preventive and personalised health and care service. I am determined to bring the benefits of technology to patients and staff."

    Source: Irish News

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