More Than Half of NHS Trusts Lead the way in AI Adoption

More Than Half of NHS Trusts Lead the way in AI Adoption

by December 18, 2019

According to a recently published report, a large number of NHS Trusts are deploying Artificial Intelligence, saying that it changes the way they care for patients, diagnose illnesses and manage paperwork. An NHS trust is an organisational unit within the UK National Health Service, serving generally either a geographical area or a specialised function.

Based on Freedom of Information (FOI) data, the latest report from NetApp revealed that 20 percent of NHS Trusts use AI for clinical care, while 16 percent used for diagnosis purposes. Conversely, just 5 percent of them are mainly using AI in pharmacy, and 3 percent for back-office functions.

Surveyed over 61 NHS Trusts, the report found that more than half, nearly 52 percent, of them have deployed AI, while 28 percent found to have been used speech recognition, 25 percent used robotic process automation (RPA), and 13 percent used machine learning. Apart from this, 16 percent of NHS Trusts are planning to deploy AI within the next two years, while 75 percent have appointed an AI-specific decision-maker for their trust.

The research report further reveals that NSH Trusts are also taking a considered approach to the ethical use of patient data, where most of them have found worried about data governance policies for patient data security. That is why 59 percent of Trusts have either planning to review or have already completed a review. NetApp Chief Executive Officer and President, George Kurian said, “Artificial intelligence has limitless potential in healthcare services and it’s encouraging to see the technology being used in half of NHS Trusts.”

“As healthcare moves towards preventative treatment and personalized medicines, artificial intelligence leaders in the NHS have a complex challenge to break through cultural and organizational barriers when it comes to providing healthcare professionals the access to data they require,” George added.

The NHS has access to a huge amount of data, but having the means to process these and handling sensitive data in an ethical way that values patient privacy, requires significant investment and care.

According to the report, nearly 39 percent of NHS Trusts have not invested in artificial intelligence technologies to date. However, the vast majority, with 41 percent is investing up to £100,000 (around US$1,31,903) on AI platforms, and 10 percent investing up to £500,000 (US$6,55,450).

Earlier this year, NHS chief Simon Stevens announced the NHS to be a world leader in artificial intelligence and machine learning within five years. And in August, the UK government released plans to invest £250 million in a National Artificial Intelligence Lab for the NHS to advance patient care.