Leeds Beckett University using AI to support autism and ADHD diagnosis and services

Leeds Beckett University is leading a new project to develop ways of using Artificial Intelligence (AI) to support the diagnosis of ADHD and autism in adults, and to help with prioritisation of services.

In partnership with South-West Yorkshire Partnership NHS Foundation Trust (SWYPFT), computing experts at Leeds Beckett aim to digitise the Trust’s adult ADHD and Autism service. Led by Grigoris Antoniou, Professor of Computer Science, the team will explore ways of using AI and computing technologies to help NHS staff with triaging, prioritising and diagnosing adults.

Professor Grigoris Antoniou explained: “Healthcare services for neurodevelopmental conditions are facing unprecedented demand from patients – and computing can play an important role to alleviate the pressures. I have been working with the Trust for a number of years, using AI to support and speed up the diagnosis of adult ADHD and autism spectrum disorders (ASD).

“The focus of this new work will build on this by looking at how technology can support various stages of the clinical pathways of adult ADHD and ASD. While this will be our initial focus, the ultimate aim is to develop technology that can be deployed widely within the NHS and other healthcare providers.”

Professor Marios Adamou OBE, Consultant Psychiatrist and head of the adult ADHD and Autism service at SWYPFT, said: “I am delighted that this collaboration was established. The NHS is facing numerous challenges in terms of meeting rising demand while maintaining quality of care, and I firmly believe that information technology and AI are crucial tools to help us face up to these challenges. My service has been at the forefront of efforts to add digital tools to our clinical practice, and the new collaboration will allow us to particularly focus on the early stages of our diagnostic pathway: triage, initial data collection and prioritisation of waiting lists.”

Professors Antoniou and Adamou recently presented the outcomes of their previous research and future plans around using AI to support ADHD patients and services at the UK Adult ADHD Network (UKAAN) conference in London.