The Health Informatics Centre (HIC) has received significant University and external investment and will expand to establish Dundee as one the UK’s leading institutes in Health, Social and Biomedical Informatics. The HIC Service will harness electronic health records in a bid to improve patient care and public health.
A consortium of six academic partners and NHS Scotland has recently been successful in becoming one of four, UK wide Farr Institutes of Health Informatics Research. The Medical Research Council (MRC) and 9 other funding bodies have recognised the UK’s exceptional data resources and long tradition of excellence in eHealth informatics research, and the potential to rapidly translate academic strengths into benefits for patients and population health, locally, nationally and globally. The University of Dundee is the lead of the Scottish consortium and co-ordinator of the UK Network. The Farr Institute will act as a high profile interface between academia, the public, practice, policy and industry.
HIC Services will become a core component of Farr Dundee, bringing together the researchers and the providers of the data in one vibrant, interdisciplinary Centre of Excellence. Further investment from the University and other funding bodies, in addition to the core Farr funding, will enable the installation of a new High Performance Computing Infrastructure. A new software framework will be developed to enhance the current delivery of data and also to store and maintain huge data sets including genomic data and clinical images.
We intend to enhance the ability of HIC Services to combine and link clinical, social and research data and to provide the information in an accessible format to enable more productive research. Our aim is to enable researchers to identify more effective treatments, improve drug safety, assess risks to public health and study the causes of diseases and disability.
The project is not just solving the issue of data management now but also gearing up to handle the huge increase of data with recent biomedical advances such as Next Generation DNA Sequencing.
Professor Andrew Morris, Dean of the School of Medicine at Dundee, said: "This builds upon over 40 years’ experience of using electronic patient records, not only to drive improvements in the quality of health care in Scotland but also to innovate in the way we deliver Clinical Trials and discover the best treatment options for patients and communities. "