What AI can and will Do for Healthcare

doctor touching glow heartbeat line/ Photo By Kopytin Georgy via Shutterstock

 

Artificial Intelligence and healthcare are two topics most individuals are not so comfortable talking about. For AI, you will either elicit feelings of awe and wonder or strike terror. For healthcare, there is always the uncomfortable feeling of the existence and potential risk of thousands of ailments. Nonetheless, these two factors have become more crucial entities in our world than ever before, and embracing them is the only way to ensure their proper management.

Healthcare is a right which many individuals worldwide do not get to enjoy. The lack of proper resources for majority of countries around the world prevent individuals from being proactive and getting proper treatment is a challenge in itself. With advancement in artificial intelligence, however, there could be a promising future where AI is integrated into healthcare systems.

Some industries are already making moves which support the notion. For instance, smartwatch companies have been able to create gadgets which help individuals to monitor their heart health using non-invasive technologies. The question now is whether the integration of such systems on larger and more advanced technologies could lead to a world where healthcare is not only accessible but also comprehensive and progressive for individuals and medical industries.

AI and the Accessibility of Medical Care

One of the greatest possible advantages of AI integration into medical systems is that healthcare will become more available and accessible to the public. According to Manish Singhal, founder of pi Ventures and editor for Livemint, AI is the one tool that could breach the gap between healthcare and every individual. “In my view, artificial intelligence has the capability to enable solutions that form the critical middle layer of access.” By bridging this gap, AI will be an all-inclusive medium for medical care, making it accessible to the masses with disregard to social and economic standings.

Constant Monitoring and Improvement

AI entails technology that is able to learn and evaluate environmental changes, user habits and bodily reactions under different circumstances. By using AI in medical gadgets and systems, users can be more on track with their health, improve their awareness on symptom triggers and receive guidelines on how to adjust their lifestyle to incorporate healthier habits. On the other hand, AI can use data analytics to collect and analyze data from millions of users and provide doctors with a large database for research and better pharmaceutical practices. The Guardian Labs notes that data analytics platforms will enable medical practitioners to evaluate patient flow to a higher degree, thereby enabling them to identify the bottlenecks which may cause a patient influx, and enable them to solve them or prevent them from happening in the first place.

Proactive over Reactive Healthcare

The addition of AI components into healthcare systems could possibly have the effect of encouraging individuals to be more proactive about their health. The traditional practice of individuals going to seek medical healthcare when they have visible or sensory symptoms is proving to be inefficient, and for chronic illnesses, such symptoms tend to appear during critical stages. The implementation of artificial intelligence into medical systems and small gadgets will enable and encourage individuals to be more aware and inquisitive of their health statuses. Doctors will also be able to advise their patients more effectively based on health information collected from their lineage as well as more comprehensive studies of the patient’s genetic make-up.

 

Modern medical technologies/ Photo By Sergey Nivens via Shutterstock

 

Jobs: Creation or Elimination?

Perhaps the biggest fear of automation is that they will become replacements for human entities in the medical field. However, studies show that this is an unlikely occurrence, and as H. James Wilson and Paul Daughtery of HBR note, AI development and growth is moving farther from complete automation to the direction which encourages collaboration between human and machine entities. Artificial intelligence will be employed to help rather than replace medical practitioners, considering there aren’t enough personnel across the globe as it is. In places where there is a shortage, intelligent machines will be able to help by performing tasks like placing reminders for taking medicines for patients, engaging in conversations for the mentally ill, enabling patients with locomotive disability to perform various tasks while also helping them to exercise their muscles and joints.

As AI continues to advance, there are many ways which scientists predict it will impact the medical world. If the technology is embraced rather than looked upon with doubt, human-machine collaboration can be improved over time to provide patients across the globe with world-class medical cover. Medical entities such as schools will also benefit by acquiring a much larger data pool for research and innovation. The information gathered will encourage a deeper understanding of pathologies and genetic disorders as well as help in developing the means to prevent hereditary diseases from being carried forward in infants. Management of chronic diseases will also be made easier and more accessible for individuals worldwide.