The UK Government has announced funding for six new National Health Service (NHS) trusts in England that will take part in the clinical trial assessing Ibex Medical Analytics ’ artificial intelligence (AI) technology to quickly detect prostate cancer.
This is said to be the largest multi-site rollout of AI in the UK.
Approximately 100,000 men receive a prostate biopsy each year in the UK, and this number is estimated to increase two-fold over the next decade.
The new AI technology, named Galen Prostate, is designed to analyse biopsy images for the automatic and precise diagnosis of prostate cancer. It is intended to accelerate diagnoses and reduce diagnostic errors.
During the clinical trial, the AI analysis results will be compared with existing diagnosis approaches, where a pathologist accurately reviews biopsies.
Galen Prostate will be used to identify and grade cancer using prostate biopsies from samples of 600 men across 14 months.
UK Secretary of State for Health and Social Care Sajid Javid said: “AI has the potential to transform our health and care system and studies like this are vital in understanding the impact AI can make.
“Cancer diagnosis and treatment has remained a top priority throughout the pandemic and I am committed to busting the backlog in cancer care.
“The earlier cancer is detected the quicker it is treated, leading to better outcomes for patients, so this groundbreaking work has the potential to benefit thousands of people.”
The government is offering the funding as part of the £140m NHSX AI in Health and Care awards.
With the funding support to deploy and assess the AI diagnostic, broader use of the technology is expected across the health service to reduce diagnosis durations and free up clinician time.
Ibex Medical Analytics CEO and co-founder Joseph Mossel said: “The UK is clearly on track to become a world leader in implementing AI technologies in healthcare and we look forward to cooperating with our NHS partners and introducing our AI solution into multiple pathology labs in the UK.”