Westminster Health Forum

Since lockdown, we have been organising our full programme of conferences online. We will continue online until further notice, to ensure we play our part in helping our employees and delegates to remain safe during this time. We are pleased that so many key stakeholders, policymakers and other interested parties - both old friends and new delegates - are taking up the opportunity to discuss public policy issues and network at our impartial seminars. New events are coming on to our conference programme all the time. So there are plenty of opportunities for you to join us if you haven’t already, from wherever you are. For booking-related queries, or information on speaking, please email us at info@forumsupport.co.uk or contact us using one of the following numbers: +44 (0)7538736244 / +44 (0)7503591880 / +44 (0)7951044809.
For delegates already booked on, we will send you the online joining instructions (including links, event numbers and passwords) five working days before your conference. If you cannot find these in your inbox please email delegate.relations@forumsupport.co.uk

Use of artificial intelligence in healthcare - opportunities, support, implementation, ethics, safeguarding, data, and engagement with clinicians and patients


***Full-scale policy conference taking place online***
This conference focuses on the future of artificial intelligence within healthcare.

Delegates will discuss the potential applications of AI in improving diagnosis and care, as well as measures that can be taken to support research, development, and implementation - along with priorities for addressing issues in areas such as ethics, bias and use of data.

It is taking place in the context of COVID-19, which has seen a rise in the use of AI as part of the healthcare sector response to the pandemic, and the ongoing AAC/NHSX/NIHR AI in Health and Care Award.

Areas for discussion include:

  • the potential for artificial intelligence within healthcare, and progress in its application so far
  • ethical considerations and lessons from other sectors
  • data sharing and security concerns
  • avoiding bias, developing safeguards, and priorities for skills and diversity in the sector
  • priorities for supporting research and development, and for overcoming barriers to implementation

The conference will be an opportunity for stakeholders to consider the issues alongside key policy officials who are due to attend from DHSC; the MHRA; DCMS; DIT; the Information Commissioner's Office; the Intellectual Property Office; the NAO; and The Scottish Government.

The agenda

  • Developing the use of AI in healthcare - progress and application so far and key lessons to take forward
  • The future of AI as a medical device
  • Assessing health data sharing, security concerns and governance in the development of AI
  • Safeguarding the use of AI in healthcare - the human-machine decision interface, safety in procedures and fairness in population health, skills development, and diversity and tackling bias at the design stage
  • The use of AI and data-driven technology in the UK’s COVID-19 response - trends and public attitudes
  • Research, funding and collaboration priorities for developing the industry to meet healthcare needs
  • Harnessing AI developments from the pandemic and overcoming barriers to implementation - diagnostics efficiency, patient engagement, infrastructure, supporting the workforce, and mitigating variation at the local level
  • Next steps for policy and the utilisation of AI in healthcare

Key areas for discussion:

Progress so far and lessons to take forward:

  • successes - the key areas that have been developed at pace and scale
  • enablers - what is needed to support implementation, and what can be learned from the role that AI has played in the pandemic
  • collaboration - strategies for improving joint working between innovators, the research community and clinicians, as well as identifying and tackling barriers
  • engagement - building trust in the technology within the clinical community, and more widely

The potential for AI in health and care:

  • opportunities and challenges to be addressed in key areas such as:
    • achieving efficiencies in diagnostics and waiting times
    • addressing workforce challenges
    • supporting system-level working, population health and improved health outcomes
    • improving personalised care and treatment
    • new medicine development and efficiency in research and clinical trials
  • the UK’s positioning within the development of AI standards on the global stage

Ethical considerations and avoiding potential harms:

  • learning from other sectors - how are ethical considerations being approached, as well as looking at how best practice can be transferred across to, and addressed within, healthcare
  • bias - safeguarding against age, gender, ethnicity and geographical unfairness within AI decision-making and outcomes, and its role within population health methods
  • research - developing the evidence-base and safeguards for decisions, care, treatment and procedures
  • diversity, skills and inclusion:
    • the role of diversity in the development of innovation, and involvement of clinicians throughout the process, including in supporting effective and non-biased design and application
    • opportunities for upskilling the workforce, and involving under-represented groups within the digital workforce
    • supporting collaborative working and providing the skills required to mitigate risk
  • regulation and maintaining safety:
    • developing a joined-up regulatory approach
    • streamlining, and how regulation can keep pace with innovation
    • finding the balance between enabling the safe use of AI without hindering development
  • developing standards and guidance around the use of AI, and applying these within healthcare


  • protection and compliance - including support for those working in the remit of AI who are not familiar with the rules around the use of health data
  • addressing data security concerns - and taking forward the privacy by design approach to equipment, software and process development
  • governance and transparency - its role in the effective and safe use of data, as well as building trust

Overcoming barriers to implementation:

  • reducing bureaucracy:
    • identifying ways to enable improved efficiency
    • the role of policy and the impact of proposed reforms in the Future of Health and Care white paper in improving development and uptake of innovative technologies
  • improving patient engagement - to support effective development that meets patient needs, to build trust, and to achieve successful uptake
  • infrastructure - what is required to provide the infrastructure needed to deliver AI across healthcare, and wider priorities for updating technology systems to support AI use
  • collaboration - priorities for linking software developers with clinicians to make sure development meets clinical challenges and needs, and how they can be applied
  • patient access:
    • supporting access to innovative technologies at the local level
    • ensuring that the benefits are experienced across the country, and ways of mitigating variation are considered as the use of AI in healthcare is advanced and scaled up
  • workforce - adapting to the change of dynamic in patient referrals when AI is used in decision making, as well as making the patient feel comfortable with the methods used

Next steps for policy and funding:

  • joined-up policy - aligning the development of AI in healthcare with the wider AI policy landscape
  • support - the role of the Artificial Intelligence in Health and Care Award in providing investment for the collaboration and adoption required to advance the use of AI in health and care
  • maintaining momentum - priorities for funding and policy to continue advances in the sector that were prompted by the response to the pandemic
  • UK leadership - how to position the UK as a global pacesetter in setting regulatory standards, and developing the use of AI in transforming the provision of health and care going forward

A scan of relevant developments:

  • the use of AI during the COVID-19 pandemic response, including:
    • development of the National COVID-19 Chest Imaging Database - which has been extended for all hospitals and universities to access to help with tracking patterns and signs of illness to enable faster intervention and preventative measures
    • UK to use AI for COVID-19 vaccine side effects - supporting the MHRA to process and keep track of reported side effects from the COVID-19 vaccine through national rollout
    • the DECOVID Project - developing new ways to improve clinical decisions and care for COVID-19 patients in intensive care units
    • Sensyne Health receives UK approval for COVID-19 risk prediction tool - identifying risk prediction in positive coronavirus cases and the likelihood of a patient developing more severe effects of the virus
  • the Artificial Intelligence in Health and Care Award:
    • launched by the NHS AI Lab in collaboration with the Accelerated Access Collaborative and National Institute for Health Research
    • aiming to support the whole development and implementation process, and accelerating benefits to patients
    • with £140m available over three years and the second round of winners due to be announced in May
  • the Secretary of State’s speech for the G7 - on the future of healthcare, setting out intentions for the UK to look at standards for AI and use of clinical data, and how this can be internationally recognised
  • Regulating AI in health and care - from NHSX Chief Executive Matthew Gould, setting out the approach and regulatory responsibilities for the regulation of AI in healthcare and addressing key issues, including:
    • questions of liability in instances of harm caused by ‘black box’ AI processes
    • adapting the legal frameworks governing intellectual property rights in order to support investment in machine learning technologies
  • NHS X’s AI in health and social care survey - aiming to identify key developments, settings for AI use, education and ethics, and ways in which the wider system can support implementation
  • the NHS Long Term Plan - which includes AI as an important aspect of digital transformation in the NHS, and wider ambitions around improving patient access to treatments and the use of technology
  • A guide to good practice for digital and data-driven health technologies - updated guidance:
    • aiming to explain what the NHS looks for when buying data and digital technology to enable the principles required to be built in to the design process
    • setting out data requirements and efficacy for industries unfamiliar with health processes
  • Artificial Intelligence: How to Get it Right - from NHSX on opportunities and challenges for utilising AI in healthcare and the establishment of the NHSX AI Lab to support and drive development
  • AI Council’s AI Roadmap - with recommendations for the Government’s development of a National AI Strategy, which includes building on the work of NHSX to drive the way forward for the use of AI to improve health outcomes as one of the key recommendations
  • Proposal for a Regulation laying down harmonised rules on artificial intelligence - the European Commission’s recently published proposal for regulating the use of artificial intelligence, which includes a risk methodology to quantify ‘high-risk’ AI in high-impact sectors such as health

Policy officials attending:

Places have been reserved by officials from the Department for Digital, Culture, Media & Sport; the Department for International Trade; the Department of Health and Social Care; the Information Commissioner's Office; the Intellectual Property Office; the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency; the National Audit Office and The Scottish Government.

Overall, we expect speakers and attendees to be a senior and informed group including Members of both Houses of Parliament, senior government and regulatory officials involved in this area of policy, as well as from regulators, pharmaceutical companies, representatives from the NHS, executive agencies including clinical staff, the life sciences sector, AI specialists, software and medical technology companies, data protection, workforce education and training, the independent and third sectors, patients groups, law firms, consultancies, and others affected by the issues discussed as well as academics and think tanks, together with reporters from the national and specialist media.

This is a full-scale conference taking place online***

  • full, four-hour programme including comfort breaks - you’ll also get a full recording and transcript to refer back to
  • information-rich discussion involving key policymakers and stakeholders
  • conference materials provided in advance, including speaker biographies
  • speakers presenting via webcam, accompanied by slides if they wish, using the Cisco WebEx professional online conference platform (easy for delegates - we’ll provide full details)
  • opportunities for live delegate questions and comments with all speakers
  • a recording of the addresses, all slides cleared by speakers, and further materials, is made available to all delegates afterwards as a permanent record of the proceedings
  • delegates are able to add their own written comments and articles following the conference, to be distributed to all attendees and more widely
  • networking too - there will be opportunities for delegates to e-meet and interact - we’ll tell you how!

Full information and guidance on how to take part will be sent to delegates before the conference

Price: £95 PLUS VAT

Shortly after every Westminster Health Forum seminar, a briefing document is produced. This is distributed to all delegates on the day as well as to our policymaker contacts in government, and to stakeholders more widely.

A seminar publication provides a timely record of proceedings, and acts as a guide to the latest thinking on current policy issues for those unable to be at the event.

This publication includes


Contributions from keynotes and panellists, including accompanying slides*
*Subject to approval

Delegate Pack

Information from the day, including delegate list, biographies and agenda


Transcript of questions and comments posed to speakers from attending delegates


Supplementary articles from speakers
and delegates