What will the future of AI in healthcare look like? This is not a question to take lightly. There are many opinions and predictions about how artificial intelligence will work in the medical field. Let’s explore some of the specific examples and benefits of AI in health organizations, and what it takes to implement solutions for healthcare.
Benefits of Artificial Intelligence in Healthcare – The Ultimate Guide
Historically, healthcare has been cautious about innovation. The COVID-19 crisis has pushed the healthcare industry, traditionally rather skeptical of IT innovations, to actively adopt modern technology. Accenture predicts that through 2021, the market of healthcare AI will reach $6.6 billion with a 40% CAGR.
Artificial intelligence is going to save the US healthcare economy $150 billion over the next five years. But how? As it turns out, there are many ways that AI can make a difference in this industry. The most valuable examples of AI in healthcare include predictive analytics, diagnosis, image recognition, and natural language processing.
Virtual nursing assistants
It’s no secret: patients in the US are turning to google before they ask their doctors. And the results are frightening. “Doctors should be afraid of patients going to the internet”- says one expert. That’s why virtual nurses may be the solution. Utilizing AI healthcare analytics, these assistants monitor patient health parameters, medication intake, and habits. They also help by preventing the worsening of chronic conditions and scheduling appointments when needed.
A great example of a virtual nurse is Molly. She is a multi-faceted avatar for patients to turn to for advice about common medical conditions and track their medical data like weight, blood pressure, and more. Plus, the app offers the convenience of private chatting to ask questions or schedule appointments.
Prescription error recognition
In the US, between 5,000 and 7,000 people die annually because of prescription errors. These errors are often due to inadequate interfaces with Electronic Health Records. Artificial Intelligence combats this issue by eliminating wrong drug options or confusing dosing units.
Machine Learning models analyze historical data and compare new prescriptions against it. These models can spot something that’s not typical: prescriptions that don’t fit the usual pattern. Doctors can adjust them and review them before they are sent to the patient.
Brigham and Women’s Hospital uses a computer system to identify potential prescription errors. The AI-driven system found 10,668 over a year and 79% of them were clinically valuable, saving the hospital up to $1.3 million in healthcare-related costs.
The rise of robots in surgical procedures is a controversial topic because some believe that they will replace humans and make decisions about surgical motions autonomously. In reality, the human stays in control, and the robot only helps the surgeon by making more precise and delicate motions.
Mayo Clinic in Jacksonville, Florida is using AI-powered robots to perform surgeries. Mayo Clinic uses AI to recognize the patterns and movements surgeons make and convert them into commands for the robots. Mayo Clinic has just started using AI to perform abdominal surgeries and is now developing a robot that can operate on the brain. This is accomplished by making the AI “watch” surgeons perform operations and develop their own patterns.
Automated image diagnosis
With the help of AI, medical professionals can quickly diagnose and treat a variety of medical conditions. Computer vision capabilities allow AI to identify abnormalities in different types of images, from CT scans to MRI to radiology scans. This technology benefits healthcare by increasing cancer prognosis, aiding in the diagnosis of tumors, and treating kidney and liver infections, bone fractures, and other illnesses and conditions.
The University of Virginia and its team of scientists created a computer program that can analyze children’s biopsy samples. It is as reliable as doctors in determining the difference between environmental enteropathy and celiac disease. By using artificial intelligence (ML algorithms) to power this technology, they have enabled a more efficient way of diagnosing these types of diseases.
Recently, Huiying Medical Systems has developed a new AI-powered imaging solution to detect the COVID-19 virus. This solution, which analyzes chest scans, detects the virus with 96% accuracy.
Connected medical devices
The AI engine can process data from connected medical devices such as glucose monitors or insulin delivery systems to provide alerts and real-time reports about patients’ health. The brain of the operation, the AI engine provides medical professionals with an easier way to monitor patient data and provide their expertise when necessary.
Philips Healthcare designed a connected medical system called IntelliVue Guardian Solution. It helps doctors find patients with abnormal vital signs by analyzing data from sensor-equipped wearables and notifying the doctor. In addition, 70% of doctors say that it has made their jobs easier because they can identify patients in need more quickly.