U.K. increases funding for AI to diagnose disease

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The U.K. government said that it's investing an additional 50 million pounds (56.2 million euros) to scale up the efforts of its existing digital pathology and imaging artificial intelligence (AI) centers of excellence.

The centers of excellence were launched in 2018 with the goal of using AI to improve the diagnosis of disease. Three centers in London, Leeds, and Coventry will receive a share of the new funds to deliver digital upgrades to pathology and imaging services across 38 NHS trusts, benefitting 26.5 million patients across England, according to the Department of Health and Social Care.

The centers include the London Medical Imaging and Artificial Intelligence Centre for Value-Based Healthcare, which will use the funds to support its mission of applying AI in medical imaging and related clinical data to provide faster and earlier diagnosis, as well as automating expensive and time-consuming manual reporting, according to the government. Two other centers -- the National Pathology Imaging Collaborative (NPIC) in Leeds and the Pathology Image Data Lake for Analytics, Knowledge, and Education (PathLAKE) in Coventry -- are focusing on digital pathology applications in AI.

In other radiology news, the government said its 200 million-pound (224.7 million euro) initiative to replace MRI, CT, and breast screening equipment has resulted in the installation of 69 scanners. In addition, 10 more are being installed and 75 have been ordered or are ready to be installed, the U.K. government said.

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