Invitation To Form Partnerships Between Industry, Research and NHS relating to Artificial Intelligence and Genomics


Posted on 14 July 2021 (Permalink)

What is the funding opportunity?

Accelerated Access Collaborative (AAC) in partnership with NHSX and the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR), plans to make £140 million available over 4 years through the Artificial Intelligence in Health and Care Award. This is to accelerate the testing and evaluation of the most promising AI technologies which meet the strategic aims set out in the NHS Long Term Plan. The Award will support technologies across the spectrum of development, from initial feasibility to evaluation within the NHS. The award has 4 focus areas for this round:

1. Self-management of long-term conditions

2. Diagnostic support*

3. Improving operational/system efficiency*

4. Supporting elective recovery

*relate to NHS Genomics Strategy

Competition 3 invites applications by Sept 2021. Applications are limited to phases 2-4 (development of prototypes and generation of early clinical safety/efficacy data towards CE/UK Conformity Assessed (UKCA) marking; first real world testing in health and social care settings; through to facilitation of systems adoption of AI technologies with market authorisation into the NHS and clinical evaluation; real world testing; and initial Health System Adoption). Funding for individual projects ranges from £0.5M to £7M.

Who are the clinical partners?

The Central and South (CAS) Genome Medicine Service Alliance covers Southampton and the Wessex region through Oxfordshire to the West Midlands. It works with the CAS NHS Genomics Laboratory Hub to provide genomic diagnostic services and embed genomics into patient care pathways for a population of 18 million. The alliance brings together 42 NHS hospital trusts and 3 academic health science networks.

What is the need?

Areas of interest aligned to NHS Genomics Strategy include but are not limited to:

· Genome sequence data analysis including variant discovery, tiering and interpretation: interpretation of potential disease-causing variants is currently labour intensive, requiring expert manual review, different software prediction tools and literature searches algorithms for genomic variant interpretation. There is a need to substantially reduce the current turnaround time from request to receiving a result of up to 80 days for the most complex WGS tests.

· Polygenic risk scoring: the widespread adoption of polygenic risk scores for common traits and cancer requires new tools to support implementation in primary and secondary care

· Case discovery. Referral decision support tools: a high proportion of rare monogenic disease remains unrecognised and undiagnosed, with a need to address this in primary care through approaches that support case discovery and referral for appropriate genomic testing

· Coding of EPR data. Clinical histories: rollout of genomic testing requires innovative tools for integration with the electronic patient record to ensure safe and effective implementation

Contact details if interested GMSA contacts by Monday 19th July to sarah.willis@uhs.nhs.uk More information on the AI in Health and Care award is here.