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Details of Grant 

EPSRC Reference: EP/S010238/2
Title: Bringing Healthcare Data to Life
Principal Investigator: Laramee, Dr RS
Other Investigators:
Berridge, Professor D
Researcher Co-Investigators:
Project Partners:
Connected Health Cities Digital Health Labs Health Economics Outcomes Research
We Predict Ltd
Department: School of Computer Science
Organisation: University of Nottingham
Scheme: Standard Research
Starts: 01 February 2020 Ends: 31 March 2023 Value (£): 269,192
EPSRC Research Topic Classifications:
Computer Graphics & Visual. Human-Computer Interactions
Statistics & Appl. Probability
EPSRC Industrial Sector Classifications:
Related Grants:
Panel History:  
Summary on Grant Application Form

Our aim is to make rich and complex histories of population healthcare data literally visible for digital exploration, analysis, comparison, decision making, and presentation. This means developing new visual analytics, visualisation methodologies and open source software which can be applied to any UK-based collection of public healthcare data: clinical commissioning groups, NHS data, Electronic Health Records (EHR) data, and geographical information. It incorporates a multi-disciplinary team combining expertise in health research, statistics, software engineering, visual analytics, visualisation, and industry.

We live in a time of unprecedented data collection and storage driven by the low cost of storage technologies and rapid increases in computing power. However, our ability to collect and store data vastly exceeds our ability to derive useful information and knowledge from it. This is the vital role that data visualisation and visual analytics play. Visualisation and visual analytics exploit the most powerful (the fastest and most informative) human sense by far, the visual system, in order to understand and derive new and fresh insight into what otherwise might be inaccessible data. Simply put, data is much more useful when we can see it.

Collective healthcare data archive and analysis are cornerstones of the UK's healthy nation strategy. As such, tremendous resources and investment are given to ensure that the NHS is supported by the best healthcare data analytics possible. Core to this investment is exploiting novel research, technology, and data analytics that create a step change from the current state-of-the-art and informs our understanding how to support the NHS in the most efficient ways. A vital component of the strategy to support healthcare data and analysis is through major concerted efforts in big data collection, e.g., Public Health England, the SAIL Databank in South Wales, SAHSU, and InfoBase Cymru, to name just a few.

The data these initiatives collect and archive is massive and constantly growing. The SAIL database alone stores over 20 years worth of healthcare data on more five million anonymised patients resulting in billions of electronic health records (EHRs). While data collection process is a critical aspect towards improving healthcare, additional expertise and cross-disciplinary study are vital to extract useful information, understanding, and making informed decisions from the data.

This project will develop free, open source, novel visual analytics and visualisation software to study the UK's rapidly increasing volume of big healthcare data. By opening up and exposing the healthcare data analysts to visual and graphical depictions of the enormous collection of the UK's healthcare data including EHR data, a whole new digital world of health understanding, exploration, analysis, comparison and engagement is possible. This healthcare adventure coincides with a rapid rise in interest to improve the collective health of the UK.

New and accessible ways of observing UK-centric healthcare data will enable new insight and advance scholarly and public understanding of the evolution of the UK's collective health. Such understanding grows ever-more crucial with the rise in ageing population and increasing pressure on the NHS to take care of the UK's collective health and well-being.
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Organisation Website: http://www.nottingham.ac.uk