Artificial Intelligence in the Healthcare Industry


 

Google was one of the first mainstream companies to utilise Artificial Intelligence in their search functionality, and with their new Google Deepmind Healthproject in the third stage of testing, they are the most well-known of the companies to promise a revolution in the healthcare industry.

Hundreds of start-ups and established firms are working with clinicians to improve care levels, decrease costs, and help researchers develop new drugs. The sky is the limit, but the industry is understandably taking painstaking care where human life is involved.

Artificial intelligence in 2018 isn't like neural networks that mimic the human brain, envisioned by science fiction writers and movie producers for the last several decades. Instead, the incredible expansion of storage space and processor speeds can give doctors and caregivers a more coherent picture to make medical decisions.

It is also allowing imaging specialists and drug researchers to do what was literally impossible without AI applications. Artificial intelligence is already part of our life without us knowing it, and here are the primary areas where we believe it will make an impact on our health in the very near future:

Medical Records


Doctors need maximum information possible to make the best decision possible. Even in the few circumstances when they have ALL medical records for a patient, doctors are busier than ever, and seldom have the time to read what sometimes runs hundreds of pages of dense medical information. Artificial intelligence is already helping to bring all that data together and offer the best "snapshot" for doctors.

There are dozens of studies concerning avoidable deaths resulting from medical errors. Take America as an example where 1 of every 100,000 people who checked into a hospital died because of an avoidable medical error. While that number may seem small, medical errors are still recorded among top three causes of death in America. This is true in other parts of the world such as UK where the medical negligence compensation culture is costing the NHS millions of pounds a year.

AI promises to bring all medical histories together and help humans avoid the kind of mistakes that we all fear when we must visit a hospital. 

Diagnosis


By all accounts, diagnosing medical maladies is an art. An upset stomach and low-grade fever could mean flu, but it could also mean something much more serious. Family practitioners, for example, usually see a patient every year or two, and have personal experience with them. Chronic complaints can be investigated or written off based on their experience.

Artificial intelligence can make those doctors way more effective.

Doctors rely on patients to tell them how they feel, and add that to the test results, in order to make a diagnosis. AI can give a doctor a view of what is truly likely, and perhaps an area to explore that they hadn't considered.

Doctors may see 10-30 patients a day, AI can bring together the experience gathered from millions of such visits and offer the medics the most likely causes, and more importantly, potential illnesses that they hadn't considered. With about 12 million Americans misdiagnosed each year, AI can only help.

Triage


Triage was developed for war when combat medics and surgeons had to make hard decisions about who to treat first. AI promises to help with those decisions in two ways.

First, the FDA has begun to approve AI applications that illuminate medical scans better than even the most talented human tech. They are providing predictive diagnosis of stroke, heart attacks and other major medical events. Reading MRI, retinal imaging, and ultrasounds is an art that the best medical personnel can read like tea leaves. A machine that learns the lessons of thousands or millions of scans and potentially identify things that many humans can miss.

Second, A & E Departments around the world can be extremely busy and hectic. AI can get the medical records together while in transport, prepare doctors for a single event, and even help them determine the best order to take patients in large accidents or at peak times. 

AI is here, it's being used in the medical field, and as it continues to develop, the benefits will be felt by all of us.

Mayfair, we care.


https://www.npr.org/sections/health-shots/2016/05/03/476636183/death-certificates-undercount-toll-of-medical-errors
https://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/863788