Researchers from Queen Mary University of London are part of a consortium of 19 partners that will aid personalized healthcare by using virtual copies of objects. EDITH (Ecosystem for Digital Twins in Healthcare) Coordination and Support Action (CSA) aims to create an environment that will accelerate digital twins in healthcare in Europe. The project will also prepare a strategic roadmap for digital twins’ wider development, integration, and uptake.
A digital twin is a virtual representation of a real-life object. In this case, it could be a patient’s body — ranging from organs to the whole body — or a layout of a hospital. It is built using powerful computer models, can help make clinical decisions based on a patient’s health, and help develop and personalize medical treatments or products.
Critically, it allows a risk-free setting to enable precision testing of huge numbers of treatments, allowing for better ‘real-world’ treatment and minimizing health risks to the patient when receiving care.
Digital twinning is not a new concept, although its use in healthcare currently lags behind other fields such as engineering.