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Innovate UK launches competition on AI for fracture treatment


Mark Say Managing Editor

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Innovate UK has launched a competition to explore the use of AI and machine learning in the diagnosis of fractures.

The national innovation agency said it will be ready to provide up to £100,000 to each of up to five projects for a first phase on technical feasibility studies of proposed solutions. Any going forward to a second phase could receive up to £140,000 for prototype development and evaluation.

The money is being made available through the organisation’s Small Business Research Initiative, with contributions from NHS Scotland and business consortium Opportunity North East.

Organisations including NHS Grampian, NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde, the University of Aberdeen and Canon Medical Research Europe will also provide support.

The competition is taking proposals on how AI and machine learning can be used to support limb radiographs and the diagnosis of fractures. Innovation UK said projects have to use a dataset of peripheral limb X-rays and reports from the University of Aberdeen to develop their AI algorithms.

Three priorities

These will be aimed at: interpreting the current text based report to correctly categorise fractures; using radiograph images to identify the presence of fractures; and ensuring the AI product is accurate in real world conditions.

The competition is the latest move in efforts to develop the use of AI in the healthcare sector. In recent months the Government, with an eye on the development of the technology, has published guidance on the use of data in the sector in the form of the Code of Conduct for Data-driven Health and Care Technology, and an announcement on backing the creation of five new centres to develop the use of AI in healthcare.

Innovate UK has been running a series of competitions to promote the use of technology in public services.

Image from GOV.UK, Open Government Licence v3.0

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