Our Future Health, the UK’s largest health research programme, aims to create one of the most detailed pictures of people’s health and is using the Microsoft Cloud to store the massive amounts of data required for the programme.
Our Future Health, a partnership between the private sector, charities and government agencies including the NHS, will build a community of five million volunteers from across the UK and give them permission to share information about health and well-being. and developing new ways to prevent, detect and treat disease.
The program will look at the main causes of death and serious illness in the UK: mental illness, cancer, diabetes, heart disease, arthritis and stroke.
Our Future Health chose Microsoft’s Azure cloud platform to process data collected from volunteers for research purposes and to support websites and applications used by medical teams.
All of this will be housed in a DNAnexus-provided Trusted Research Environment (TRE) located in Azure UK. TRE enables researchers to reliably access and analyze data using a variety of bioinformatics and biomedical research tools, including genomic analysis.
DNAnexus and Microsoft will work together, but as with any project of this nature, Microsoft and DNAnexus will not have access to the data in the program. Data will be identified, encrypted, stored and securely managed in the UK in accordance with all relevant data protection legislation and the UK Government’s data protection policy.
Andrew Roddam, CEO of Our Future Health, said: “We are delighted to have Microsoft as a key technology partner with us to provide our cloud services, which will be an integral part of our future health and will underpin many of the critical systems that are essential to delivering the programme. will ultimately help create the most detailed picture of people’s health we’ve ever seen.”
Volunteers in the program, aged 18 and over, who represent the diversity of the UK population, will donate small blood samples so that researchers can look at DNA data and biomarkers, fill in questionnaires about their health and lifestyle, and use our permission to securely link future health to your health record.
Doing so can be the key to many breakthroughs, including:
• New signals that can be used to detect disease much earlier than currently can lead to new or improved screening, prevention programs, and early treatment.
• New ways to more accurately predict who is at high risk of disease, and screenings are more beneficial.
• More targeted or personalized therapies, tools and technologies to delay disease onset and alter disease progression; reduce the risk of disease; and more targeted ways to study disease in high-risk populations.
Jacob West, MD, Health and Life Sciences, Microsoft UK, said: “Healthcare teams around the world trust the Microsoft Cloud to deliver better experiences, insights and care while managing and protecting their health and personal data. , is proud to support the work of Our Future Health, which will provide research teams with a unique perspective on life-changing diseases.”
Our collaboration with Future Health is the latest example of Microsoft’s efforts to support health and biomedical research, precision medicine initiatives and clinical collaborations. In 2020, the NHS rolled out Microsoft 365 across all UK authorities, including 1.2 million staff; Major NHS trusts in Leeds and Birmingham unlock innovation and collaboration by moving to the Azure cloud; Two NHS surgeons in Northumbria are investigating how Microsoft AI can reduce waiting times, support recommendations from healthcare teams and provide patients with better information to make more informed decisions about their care.