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The challenge

Despite its relative youth having commenced only in 1948, the National Health Service (NHS) is undoubtedly one of the most cherished organisations in Britain. Providing free care to all residents, the NHS has grown to a capacity where it interacts with patients 1.5 million times a day and requires more than £170 billion of funding each year in order to do so. The vast majority of this funding is spent on providing curative/rehabilitative care to those in urgent need, with just 4% being attributed to preventive care to mitigate future demands on resources. The pandemic has only exacerbated this challenge as the backlog of elective cases continue to rise   placing a demand on spending, whilst limiting the much needed and urgent focus  on preventive care and mitigation planning. In order to help people in our communities  stay happy, healthy and independent for as long as possible, expenditure on preventative care and mitigation planning must be spent on bringing ‘fit-for-purpose’ care closer to home.  

A key enabler to achieving this is for the NHS to better understand patient needs at a local, community level.  by assessing how population demography and environmental factors correlate to the risks leading to  health inequalities and how this impacts  curative/rehabilitative services within the current healthcare provisioning ecosystem in the UK.  

What we are doing

With support from the European Space Agency (ESA) Astrosat will perform a feasibility study to assess the suitability of using various data sources, with a particular focus on Earth Observation (EO) data, to better understand risk factors that lead to health inequalities, cross-reference risk factors to current service provisioning, monitor the impact of interventions, and measure the impact of interventions on health outcomes. 

How we are doing it

We will work with the NHS, and other service providers such as Local Authorities and Health & Social Wellbeing departments to determine the most appropriate data from EO, and what is available in the public domain as well as  NHS’s own internal data. Our inference engine will be used to test the potential of machine learning in aiding the prediction of outcomes of intervention or nonaction for care needs in different locations. The information produced will be presented on Astrosat’s our web-based visualisation platform, ORBIS, to provide actionable intelligence to aid decision-making, interrogation, deep analysis, and reporting by those who need and are authorised to access it. 

Who is involved?

Hampshire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust provides acute hospital services to 600,000 patients in Basingstoke, Winchester, Andover and surrounding areas in Hampshire and West Berkshire. The Foundation Trust provides services from Andover War Memorial Hospital, Basingstoke and North Hampshire Hospital and the Royal Hampshire County Hospital. They  also provide outpatient and assessment services from Alton, Bordon and Romsey community hospitals. https://www.hampshirehospitals.nhs.uk/ 

Astrosat’s motto is ‘Every Problem has a Space Solution’. We specialise in using Earth Observation and data science to address a range of challenges such as climate change, societal issues and how these problems interact with business needs and CSR objectives.