The NHS will receive a £250 million boost to build artificial intelligence that could help treat conditions including cancer, dementia and heart disease, the Department of Health has announced.
The money will be invested in a new National Artificial Intelligence Lab, Health Secretary Matt Hancock has said.
The projects developed at the AI lab could help tackle some of the biggest challenges facing the NHS, including improving cancer screening, identifying patients most at risk of dementia or heart disease, and automating admin tasks, giving medical professionals more time with patients, the Department of Health said.
The Prime Minister has welcomed the news and said the NHS is “leading the way” in health technology.
Boris Johnson said: “The NHS is revered for the world-class care it provides every day – a treasured institution that showcases the very best of Britain.
“But it is also leading the way in harnessing new technology to treat and prevent, from earlier cancer detection to spotting the deadly signs of dementia.
“Today’s funding is not just about the future of care though. It will also boost the frontline by automating admin tasks and freeing up staff to care for patients.”
Mr Hancock said: “We are on the cusp of a huge health tech revolution that could transform patient experience by making the NHS a truly predictive, preventive and personalised health and care service.
“I am determined to bring the benefits of technology to patients and staff, so the impact of our NHS Long Term Plan and this immediate, multimillion pound cash injection are felt by all. It’s part of our mission to make the NHS the best it can be.”