What is ROAD2H?

ROAD2H is a collaborative research project led by Imperial College London, UK, with China National Health Development Research Center as the key partner in China. The other collaborators are King’s College London, UK, and University of Belgrade, Serbia. The project is funded by the British government through the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council – Global Challenges Research Fund.

The project aims to develop methods and tools for Learning Health Systems, whereby routine healthcare data are utilized to generate continuous improvement in healthcare delivery. The concepts of Big Data and machine learning are very much part of this. The ROAD2H project will focus on healthcare systems that are making great strides towards universal health coverage (UHC) through national health insurance schemes and integrated care. China and Serbia are collaborating as pilot sites.

The specific project objectives are to develop prototype, smart clinical decision support systems that integrate individual patient data with local clinical guidelines. These prototype systems will help to improve clinical decision making (diagnosis and treatment), initially for chronic obstructive pulmonary disorder (COPD) and chronic kidney disease (CKD), two major causes of death and ill health in China.

For the first time, ROAD2H combines cutting edge computing techniques such as argumentation and optimization – allowing conflicting clinical guidelines to be resolved whilst taking into account resource implications – together with the integration of hospital electronic health record (EHR) data and health insurance claims data, such as those from the National Rural Medical Scheme in China. For China, the project findings could have important policy implications in terms of harnessing the potential of eHealth and personalized medicine in China, whilst accelerating China’s transition towards UHC.