Transformation Directorate

AI Deployment Platform

The NHS AI Lab will pilot an AI Deployment Platform (AIDP) that will act as a store for AI medical imaging technologies in radiology workflows. Our vision is to make diagnostics more efficient and scalable by giving NHS organisations access to an ‘AI Model Store’ to choose approved AI medical imaging technologies from a range of vendors.

Initially being piloted with two imaging networks, EMRAD (East Midlands Imaging Network) and Thames Valley Radiology Network, we will be testing a new centralised cloud-based deployment platform for AI technologies to understand how to safely deploy AI at scale. This will support NHS organisations by removing the need for local deployment and speed up the time AI tools are ready for use within their hospitals.

In particular, the pilot will test a new way to make the deployment of AI products more scalable, from a technical point of view, while testing AI tools for performance monitoring in agreement with regulations.

AI medical imaging technologies could deliver significant benefits to the NHS and patients. Most AI technologies currently deployed for testing in the NHS specialise in providing imaging solutions. Research has shown there are around 200 CE marked AI imaging technologies already on the market. For example, there is AI capable of supporting clinicians to spot lung cancer sooner and take action which saves them time, reduces errors and, most importantly, helps patients receive the care they need faster. AI imaging solutions also form the majority of technologies being tested and evaluated through the AI in health and Care Award.

AI medical imaging technologies, however, are not distributed evenly throughout the NHS and trusts can find it hard to know which are safe to use. Expertise and local IT infrastructure can also slow down the introduction of these technologies into hospitals. Introducing a deployment platform could help smooth the introduction of novel AI technologies.

The platform will also help bring transparency for patients about the types of AI technologies being deployed. The AIDP aims to make it easier to continually monitor the performance of AI technologies (post-market surveillance), which all medical devices are regulated to do.

Read more about our AI in imaging work