WORLD-leading technology is set to deliver more skin cancer tests across the East of England, thanks to latest innovation funding.
A new high-tech tool that uses artificial intelligence (AI) to analyse skin lesions is now being made available in three NHS skin hubs around the country, including one covering Suffolk and north east Essex, giving more people access to speedy and accurate skin cancer assessments.
This will support local NHS teams to ensure that people receive the right treatment as soon as possible at a time when urgent skin cancer referrals are increasing.
The new service is in addition to the national roll-out of the latest teledermatology technology: NHS England » NHS expands high-res skin imaging to speed up cancer diagnoses and treatment for tens of thousands of patients
Around 32 cases of malignant melanoma are diagnosed across the East of England every week – that’s around 1,700 per year.
London-based medical tech company Skin Analytics, supported by the East of England Cancer Alliance, was successful in securing funding for the AI tool from the Small Business Research Initiative Cancer Programme. This funding boost gives more NHS patients access to latest skin cancer technology.
See the strategy here: Strategy :: East of England Cancer Alliance
Funding for the new technology was secured as national skin cancer rates are on the increase and NHS trusts face growing demands for urgent specialist appointments.
The AI tool, called DERM, analyses images of skin lesions to help doctors find cancers at an early stage. Already in use by several NHS trusts, it has already been used to review more than 38,000 NHS patients and detected more than 2,200 cancers.
With over 16,700 new diagnoses every year, melanoma is the fifth most common cancer in the UK. Incidence rates have increased by almost a third (32%) in the past decade. (STATISTICS | Melanoma UK)
Skin cancer survival rates improve dramatically with early diagnosis and treatment.
Skin Analytics is one of several organisations to have secured SBRI Cancer Programme funding following a competitive selection process involving thousands of applications. The award provides fully funded development contracts between awarded companies and the NHS and is designed to accelerate the adoption of successful initiatives solving specific healthcare challenges and NHS priorities.
For more information on Skin Analytics, see: Home - Skin Analytics (skin-analytics.com)