The UK Government has published a new code of conduct on Artificial Intelligence (AI) and data-driven technologies in healthcare, with a view of creating a “safe and trusted environment in which innovation can flourish”.
The code – which for now is in initial consultation stage – encourages suppliers of data-driven technologies to adhere to a set of 10 gold-standard principles. According to government, the code of conduct will:
- ensure the NHS and taxpayers get a good deal on future partnerships with technology companies
- allow the government to work with suppliers to guide the development of new technology, so products are suitable to the NHS in the future
- set clear guidelines on how NHS patient data is protected
- allow the best data-driven technologies to introduce benefits to patients and staff faster.
The document in turn lists five commitments outlining what the government will do to support and encourage innovators in health and care. These include pledges to simplifying the regulatory and funding landscape, encouraging the system to adopt innovation and creating an environment that enables experimentation.
From techUK’s perspective, the centre has a strong role to play in setting the challenges and standards that technology needs to meet. We also need to make it easier to develop, test and prove technology in the UK. This will allow innovators to do what they do best and help to cement the UK’s position as one of the best places to innovate in health and technology.
The Department for Health and Social Care is now considering how best to develop the code, which currently relies on organisations signing up voluntarily. In the future, supportive initiatives could include setting up a partnership support service and development of a Kitemark scheme for the code.
The Department for Health and Social Care (DHSC) is seeking feedback, via an online questionnaire, on the initial code to improve and strengthen its contents. The responses received will feed into the next version of the document, which DHSC aim to publish in December.
If you have any further questions or queries about the code, or how it may impact your organisation, please get in touch with Katherine Mayes.