The University of St Andrews has secured funding of 4.37 million Euros from the European Union under the Horizon 2020 programme, to study security of medical data.

The study, called The Serums project, aims to produce tools and technologies to support future-generation healthcare systems that will integrate home-based healthcare into a holistic treatment plan, reducing cost and travel-associated risks and increasing quality of healthcare provision.

It will be led by Dr Vladimir Janjic, Dr Juliana Bowles and Dr Chris Brown, a team from the School of Computer Science at St Andrews, and will bring together nine leading academic and industry partners from the UK and abroad.

The project leaders explained: “Healthcare provision of the future will necessarily be multi-site and will need to cross traditional boundaries of hospitals, health centres, home, workplace, and even national borders.

“This, coupled with the increasingly strict regulations on privacy and ownership of the data, creates a huge pressure on healthcare providers to ensure that storage, access, communication and analytics of the medical data is performed in a safe and secure way. Tackling these problems, while still ensuring fast response and high-quality of service for the patients, is the main focus of the Serums project.”

The partnership includes the University of St Andrews, the University of Cyprus and Université Catholique de Louvain in Belgium, as well as American multinational technology and consulting corporation IBM. Also Sopra Steria UK, a recognised European leader in digital transformation, Software Competence Center Hagenberg from Austria and two large hospital centres: Zuyderland Medisch Centrum in the Netherlands and Fundació Cliníc per a la Recerca Biomèdica in Catalonia.

The aim of the project is to ensure that the patients are at the centre of the healthcare provision, enhancing their personal care and maximising the quality of treatment that they will receive, while ensuring trust in the security and privacy of their confidential medical data.