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Revolutionising Healthcare: The Transformative Power of Artificial Intelligence

✍️Rem Ehab Abdelkader | Medical Student at MMPME & Human Rights Trainer at IFMSA

 

What is Artificial Intelligence? 🧠

AI is a simulation of human intelligence that can be performed by computer systems.

Essentially, AI is a collection of algorithms that are able to produce classifications or predictions from the user's inputs, learning from those inputs over time. Artificial intelligence is a broad scientific field that includes subfields such as machine learning (ML) and deep learning (DL). AI is considered to be split into two groups:

  • Weak AI - also known as Narrow AI or Artificial Narrow Intelligence (ANI) is AI trained to perform specific tasks. This can be seen in the form of Apple's Siri, ChatGPT, Amazon's Alexa, Chatbots and Google Translate

  • Strong AI is capable of intelligence equal or better than human intelligence This type, however, doesn't yet have practical examples.


 

What can Artificial Intelligence do? ⚒️

There are numerous, real-world applications of AI systems today. IBM has identified 5 major ones. Most current daily applications of AI will fit into one or more of these categories.

Speech Recognition

It processes human speech into written format. Examples include smart assistants, autocorrect, autofill, and voice search.

Customer Service

Computer Vision

Recommendation Engines

Automated Stock Trading


 

Why use AI in Healthcare?💻

It is estimated that AI applications can cut annual US healthcare costs by USD 150 billion in 2026

AI has the potential to enhance every step of the healthcare process. AI is could assist healthcare workers in a range of duties, including recording clinical information, patient outreach, administrative processes, radiology image analysis, and patient monitoring. This can be considered as a potential cost-saving mechanism for the healthcare system. It is also predicted that this will decrease hospital stays, physician visits, and treatments. Additionally, AI-based technology will have an important role in helping people stay healthy via continuous monitoring and coaching and will ensure early disease diagnosis, tailored treatments, and more efficient follow-ups.


Applications of Al in Healthcare 🩺

Forbes stated in 2018 that the most important areas would be administrative workflows, image analysis, robotic surgery, virtual assistants, and clinical decision support

Major applications of AI in medicine include;


Precision medicine

This offers the customisation of medical treatments for specific patients or patient groups based on their personal profile and disease characteristics. Involving AI in large datasets and digital health applications, individual biology can be prioritised instead of population-based biology. Large datasets include genetic, demographic, and electronic health records of patients to predict the best course of therapy. Whereas, digital health applications include healthcare apps that store and process data added by patients from food intake, emotional state or activity to health monitoring data from wearables, mobile sensors.

Drug discovery and development

Machine vision for diagnosis and surgery

Augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR)

Smart Homes & Assistive Robots


 

What do healthcare workers think about AI? 🥼


Some healthcare practitioners are extremely sceptical of Al playing a significant role in the future of medicine.

When asked about the future of Al in primary care, some practitioners express strong feelings

about technology having a major influence on the future of the field, although they understand it's potential benefits. The ethical conundrum that could arise between Al and patients alongside absence of empathy are the two primary causes of concern. However, it is undeniable that Al technology is advancing . With the ongoing advancements in Al and smart medical equipment, it is possible in the near future that patients could manage their conditions from home, relieving a large portion of the health system.


 
COntent Editor on a lilac background

Edited by: Olivia Laughton | Content Editor | BSc Microbiology, University of Leeds


 

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