THE UK’S first network of digital autopsy centres was launched yesterday, in a £50m deal between Malaysian medical informatics company iGene and UK coroner services. The first of 18 centres, a £3m facility based in Sheffield’s Medico-Legal Centre, will be completed in November.
The launch was attended by Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak and trade minister Mustapha Mohammed. iGene chief executive Matt Chandran noted that “this is the first such network anywhere in the world, and a testament to the innovative thought-leadership of the UK government.”
Improving public services with digital technology is a key theme of this year’s World Islamic Economic Forum. More than 200,000 deaths are subject to a post-mortem in the UK each year, and it is expected that, in the future, digital autopsies will account for 70 per cent of these.
Digital autopsies involve a three-dimensional scan of the body, with visualisation software enabling the pathologist to conduct a full, non-invasive digital post-mortem. Results are available shortly after.