AI database used to improve treatment of UK COVID-19 patients

NHSX has pioneered an anonymous bank of over 40,000 scans collected over the course of the pandemic. The National COVID-19 Chest Imaging Database (NCCID) collects X-Rays, CT and MRI scans to speed up diagnosis of the disease, enabling clinicians to implement treatment plans faster and more effectively as well as allowing them to predict more accurately which patients may end up in a critical condition.

Established in April 2020 with the British Society of Thoracic Imaging (BSTI), Royal Surrey NHS Foundation Trust and AI specialists Faculty, the NCCID provides a more comprehensive understanding of COVID-19, collating data from 20 NHS trusts across the country to detect disease patterns and markers of the virus, which, in turn, enable more accurate early diagnoses and prognoses and inform new treatments. This information, which is stripped of any patient identifying information, is also used to inform algorithms used in hospitals and universities to treat and monitor patients.

A particular benefit highlighted was more accurate early detection. For example, clinicians at Addenbrooke’s Hospital in Cambridge are using the information gathered on the database to build an algorithm to better identify whether a patient exhibiting potential early COVID-19 symptoms has the virus even before they have