As per the plans, OUH will install the Philips IntelliSite Pathology Solution at the John Radcliffe Hospital in Oxford.

The Philips solution will serve as a central laboratory service for partner sites at Milton Keynes University Hospital NHS Foundation Trust and Great Western Hospital NHS Foundation Trust in Swindon.

Philips said pathologists play an important role in identifying diseases, especially with cancer diagnosis as they analyze tissue samples on glass slides under a microscope.

When a sub-specialist is consulted, the glass slides should be transported to the second site, which could result in lost or damaged slides or delay in diagnosis.

With a digital network in place, OUH can now use Philips IntelliSite Pathology Solution, along with its Ultra Fast Scanner and Image Management System, resulting in remote collaboration between the three regions and within the Thames Valley Cancer Network on patient cases.

The collaboration will reduce delay in slide transport times, while encouraging efficient workflows across the sites enable quicker access to specialist pathology opinions. It will also support NHS Improvement’s proposed Pathology networks and will bring together clinical expertise with the goal of enhancing patient outcomes.

Oxford University Hospitals cellular pathology honorary consultant Professor Clare Verrill said: “As an NHS Global Digital Exemplar committed to improving patient care by embracing the latest digital technologies and cross-site collaborations, this partnership aims to modernize patient care and offer innovative world-leading services.

“Initially starting with some specialist areas, we hope to soon make our pathology services fully digital, meaning our laboratory teams can maximize efficiency and focus on analysing samples rather than spending time manually transporting slides between hospitals.”

Philips IntelliSite Pathology Solution is an automated digital pathology image creator, viewer and a management system that includes an Ultra Fast Scanner and Image Management System.

The solution has advanced software tools to manage the scanning, storage, presentation, reviewing and sharing of images.

Philips digital pathology solutions general manager Marlon Thompson said: “With 70% of NHS diagnoses requiring a pathology sample, and with sample analysis becoming increasingly sophisticated while demand increases, Philips is committed to collaborating to modernize UK pathology services.”