News in Brief

News in Brief: NHS Digital Health Tech Standards Audits issued, HDR UK’s Black Internship Programme opens, Warwick explores skin cancer tech and more

As ever, there’s been plenty to talk about across the health tech community. Here, we take a look at some of the stories that have caught our eye recently.

NHS Digital Health Technology Standards Audit templates issued

NHS organisations have been issued with the first NHS Digital Health Technology Standards Audit templates, designed to assess their compliance with assurance of technologies.

Lauren Harkins, Assistant Director at NHS Transformation Directorate, commented: “It’s important that digital health complies with DTAC, our national baseline standard.”

She added: “This is a big step forward for the DHT agenda, driven by DTAC, enabling us to support NHS organisation and also delivering the first national picture of tech deployed in the NHS.”

Health Data Research UK’s Black Internship Programme 2023 opens for applications

The Health Data Science Black Internship Programme 2023 has opened for applications from interns and host organisations.

Health Data Research UK (HDR UK) runs the programme in partnership with the UK Health Data Research Alliance and 10,000 Black interns. It aims to tackle underrepresentation in science, technology, engineering and mathematics careers through providing opportunities to work on health data science projects with leading organisations.

Sarah Cadman, Director of Talent and Training at HDR UK, said: “Following the success of last year’s programme where 100 percent of participants said they would recommend the programme, we are delighted to welcome interest from both interns and host organisations for 2023! It is incredibly exciting to once again be supporting the next generation of health data scientists.”

More information is available here.

NHSmail and NHS Care Identity Sign In to improve integration for users

A service has been launched allowing NHSmail users to use their NHS Care Identity (Smartcard) account to sign in and access services supported by NHSmail across supported web browsers.

A new edition to the NHSmail sign-in page, this service is intended to offer NHS Care Identity users an ‘integrated and seamless experience’, and reduce the time it takes them to sign in.

In order to register for the service, users must have an active account, have accepted NHSmail Acceptable Use Policy, have an active NHS Care Identity (Smartcard) account, and have Credential Management System deployed on their machine along with a compatible web browser.

Research centre opens at Royal Free Hospital

A new research centre called the NIHR Royal Free Clinical Research Facility has been officially opened at the Royal Free Hospital in London.

The centre has received funding from the Royal Free Charity and a £4.9 million grant from the National Institute for Health Research. It aims to develop more effective treatments for a range of conditions including cancer, liver disease and haemophilia.

The facility’s director, Tim Meyer, commented: “Our purpose-built clinical space is being used to develop ground-breaking treatment for a broad range of medical conditions. We have the capacity and the capability to manage complex and intensive studies. We are now delivering on our goal to provide our local and distant patient populations the opportunity to participate in cutting edge research providing access to new treatments, devices and diagnostic tools.”

New tech used for skin cancer treatment in Coventry and Warwickshire

A new “skimometer” has been developed at the University of Warwick which aims to detect how far cancers extend under the skin.

The skinometer produces pulses of light that strike the skin’s surface and bounce off, with waveforms of the reflected light indicating how far the skin cancer has spread. It also indicates moisture levels and how the skin reacts to different moisturisers, which could aid the development of skin-type-specific sun creams.

Preliminary testing of the scanner has begun at University Hospital, with the study also examining whether the skinometer could be used in assessing how to treat dry skin conditions with moisturisers.