Applying ethical AI to improve children’s care

2 Sep 2021, 9:15 a.m.

Great Ormond Street Hospital for Children (GOSH) and Sensyne have announced a new partnership to improve children’s lives using clinical artificial intelligence to analyse anonymised patient data.

GOSH and Sensyne, a UK-based clinical artificial intelligence company, have announced a five year non-exclusive Strategic Research Agreement (SRA) to analyse anonymised patient data. This will allow us to work together to find new and better ways to treat rare and complex childhood diseases.

While GOSH joins a community of Trusts who already have similar SRAs with Sensyne (Oxford University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, Chelsea & Westminster Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, South Warwickshire NHS Foundation Trust, Wye Valley and George Eliot NHS Trusts) this is the first agreement from Sensyne to focus on improving care and accelerating the development of medicines for children.

Under the agreement, Sensyne and GOSH will focus on three areas:

  • Paediatric drug discovery -  helping to discover new medicines aimed at treating childhood diseases.
  • Tools to support clinical decision making for children’s care – helping healthcare teams make decisions by using AI to analyse complex data.  The tools will be developed to create early warning systems that identify children most at risk and potentially allow earlier interventions.
  • Clinical trial design – using AI to study historic clinical data and create new ‘model’ data for comparison.

An exciting opportunity to harness the power of data to improve care

Our patients have rare and complex conditions and developing new diagnoses and treatments for them can take a long time and it’s expensive. But we have a history of successful collaborations with industry partners to help develop better treatments, faster.

We now have the opportunity to combine our expertise as a leader in digital innovation in the NHS with our drive to improve patient care, harnessing the power of our unique data.

Strict governance with anonymised data

As a trusted provider of care, we have robust processes in place to remove identifiable data prior to providing partners with access. Each and every request from Sensyne will operate under an agreed Data Processing Protocol (DPP) and be subject to ethical and privacy oversight by GOSH.

Our agreements do not involve the sale or bulk transfer of patient records, but the provision of anonymised data in response to specific requests to support research.

We are confident that our agreement safeguards our patients’ anonymity.

Find out more about anonymised data partnerships at GOSH.

Bolstering research

Children are at the heart of everything we do. Any financial return GOSH receives from Sensyne will be reinvested to facilitate research that will ultimately improve patient care.

The Trust will receive shares in Sensyne Health plc, an investment of £250,000 per year over the 5 year agreement, and royalty on revenues that are generated by Sensyne from the research undertaken under the SRA.

Global data collaboration

GOSH has a track record of innovating with data to improve healthcare (see the Digital Research, Informatics and Virtual Environments unit DRIVE website) and is closely connected with other children’s hospitals around the world. This partnership with Sensyne will build on these credentials to build a global ethical AI research community, dedicated to using data to find new and better ways to treat childhood diseases.

Details of the agreement

This new SRA provides non-exclusive access to longitudinal anonymised patient data for analysis by Sensyne using its expertise in Clinical AI.

Learn more about this new SRA on the Sensyne website.

Research will be undertaken to the highest standards of information governance and data security in accordance with NHS principles, the UK Government Code of Practice and data protection legislation. All data supplied to Sensyne will be anonymised by the Trust beforehand and the provision of the data will operate under an agreed Data Processing Protocol (“DPP”) under GOSH ethical oversight. GOSH patient data is stored securely within the Trust’s Digital Research Environment, a research platform hosted on Microsoft Azure Cloud, which will facilitate safe, efficient data processing by Sensyne and enable immediate commencement of research.

Find out more about anonymised data partnerships at GOSH.

At GOSH we treat patients with the most rare and complex conditions. Research into developing new diagnoses and treatments is vital and we are always looking to find ways to improve patient outcomes, while making sure their information is safe and secure.

Children are at the heart of everything we do and this collaboration is no different. It will offer the potential to use digital innovation to find and develop diagnosis and treatments much faster not just for GOSH patients but children across the country and internationally.

Matthew Shaw, Our Chief Executive

We are delighted to be undertaking research in partnership with Great Ormond Street Hospital, widely recognised as one of the leading centres for children’s healthcare and research in the world.

Together we aim to use the power of ethical AI to make a real difference in finding new and better ways to treat rare and complex childhood diseases and in future to develop a world-wide research community using ethical AI to improves the lives of children world-wide.

Lord (Paul) Drayson PhD, CEO of Sensyne Health

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