You might have heard about the co-founder of DeepMind, Mustafa Suleyman, who was asked to take his time off from Google till the end of the year. There was no explanation why he was put on leave. However, as reported by Bloomberg last week, there were rumors linking this with some of the recent controversies over DeepMind’s work in the health sector, in particular, its partnership with the UK’s Royal Free London National Health Service (NHS) Foundation Trust.

Suleyman co-founded DeepMind in 2010 together with its present Chief Executive Officer, Demis Hassabis. The company was brought by Google for £360 million in 2014. Suleyman oversees the applied division of DeepMind, which is in-charge of artificial intelligence (AI) research in health, energy, and other areas. In 2017, DeepMind launched an application called Streams, to assist physicians in spotting patients at risks of developing acute kidney injury. 

The application was subsequently trialed at Royal Free but found not to be complying with the UK’s Data Protection Act. Roughly 1.6 million patients were not informed that their data would be used as part of this DeepMind trial. Suleyman apologized over an official statement after DeepMind was heavily criticized. The application was eventually taken over by the newly established Google Health division last November. 

Data is perhaps the most delicate and debatable part of the whole AI-healthcare research. On one hand, algorithms feed on data and there could be serious errors shall the data do not represent a comprehensive group of patients. On the other hand, patients’ privacy and identity are just as crucial, even if patients voluntarily offered their data to be a part of the research process. 

Earlier, AIMed had questioned if there is an ethical way to treat medical data and the possibility of patients recognizing themselves via their own data, as well as the role of blockchain in safeguarding or changing medicine. This AIMed Europe, we will continue to delve into these tricky topics and get our guests to be at the forefront of the debates.  

Session focus: Are we ready for AI: Exploring the complex themes of ethics, data and blockchain 

When: Wednesday, September 18th2019 (12:45 – 13:30) 

A panel discussion led by academia, industrial and medical experts to bring the audience through the intricates topics of data, AI, ethics, and blockchain. 

Attendees will gain the following knowledge:

Learn the importance of ethics, data, and blockchain in AI-healthcare research and implementations. 

Understand the challenges and dilemma in data security, patient privacy, and use of representative data in creating algorithms.   

Review on the current regulations and policies; whether they are sufficient and what needs to be done. 

Benefit from the active discussions between speakers and attendees. 


Hassan Chaudhury, Digital Health Lead, UK Department for International Trade.

Dr. Stylianos Kampakis, Research Fellow, University College London Centre for Blockchain Technologies; Chief Data Scientist and Head of Tokenomics, Electi Consulting, and Chief Executive Officer and Instructor, The Tesseract Academy. 

Dr. Stewart Southey, Consultant Anaesthetist, Poole Hospital NHS Foundation Trust.

Dr. Allan Tucker, Senior Lecturer, Head of Intelligent Data Analysis Group, Brunel University.

Dr. Antanas Montvila, Clinical Fellow, King’s College Hospital NHS Foundation Trust and Board Member, European Junior Doctors Association. 

If you are interested in the session, book now on AIMed Europe 2019 official site, or follow us on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram to check out the latest promotion and delegate discount. A more detailed AIMed Europe 2019 agenda can be found here.

Author Bio
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Hazel Tang

A science writer with data background and an interest in the current affair, culture, and arts; a no-med from an (almost) all-med family. Follow on Twitter.