From practice management to risk assessment and diagnosis, there are an endless stream of opportunities available within the healthcare industry to leverage technology for the development of more efficient, precise, and impactful solutions to improve patient care. With that, the amount of healthcare data these days is hardly manageable with traditional analytical tools and techniques. This leaves Artificial Intelligence-based technologies with an opportunity to become the core engines to drive improvements within this arena.
Artificial intelligence-based algorithms improve gradually as they interact with the “training data” that will allow humans to have unprecedented insight into diagnosis, risk assessment, practice management and treatment processes to collectively improve patient care. We are going to focus on five areas in particular where the healthcare industry will likely be transformed thanks to it AI technologies over the next decade.
- Efficient Use of EHRs
No doubt, EHRs have played a vital role in healthcare’s journey towards digitization, but not without some problems associated with them. These include, but are not limited to endless documentation and user burnout. Because of this, EHR vendors are developing smarter electronic health record software systems. For instance, we can take a look at talkEHR, which comes with an integrated artificial intelligence-based medical voice assistant named “Allison.” Such creative developments are focused on automating routine processes, and helping providers interact more naturally with their EHR platforms. Medical voice assistants are also helping to improve the clinical documentation processes, but there is still an opportunity to leverage technology to develop even smarter solutions.
Providers are expecting more innovation in the future. Dr. Adam, a New Jersey-based technologist said the following, “In the near future, we may need body cams like Policemen in order to record patient encounters and an efficient AI-based system to retrieve information from those videos to complete the documentation in EHRs. Such developments would be great for providers.” Continuing on, “Artificial intelligence may also help to automate routine processes like refills, and it can also help us to develop a system to leverage previous data to inform the provider about the things that require immediate intervention. All of these developments will revolutionize the healthcare industry and patient care.”
- Using EHRs as a Reliable Risk Predictor
Computerized survival prediction will make it easier and quicker to identify risk factors on the basis of previous patients’ data. EHRs are a goldmine of such data but the difficulties associated with extracting and formatting it in order to support clinical decisions is a major factor to overcome before this is commonplace. Over the next decade or so, it’s probable that technologists will develop some sort of central unit or unified data format for patients’ data entry into EHRs so they can develop AI-aided tools to interpret this data in meaningful way.
- Wearable Health Monitoring Devices
In today’s world, many people have access to wearable health monitoring devices that are equipped with a variety of sensors to record important health information around the clock. These smart devices can record the heart rate, blood pressure, and other health factors of the user to offer a unique perspective on an individual as well as population health. Apple watch is a good example of a wearable health monitoring device. With that, the collection and analysis of the data generated by these smart devices on-the-go is a tough challenge for both providers and technologist. It’s possible that Artificial intelligence can be a solution to this problem as we can use it to extract meaningful data and insights from this large amount of data. It can then, in theory, be incorporated with other patient provided information so the provider can offer better care based on a bulk of information.
- Use of Smartphone Camera as a Powerful Diagnostic Tool
Improved smartphone cameras are now capable of capturing high-quality images that are viable for analysis through artificial intelligence to identify health disorders. As it stands, dermatology and ophthalmology are the two most relevant specialties that can use this technology to identify disorders, especially in developing countries. For testing purpose, researchers in the United Kingdom developed a tool to identify developmental disorders in children. The artificial intelligence-based tool used the jawline, nose placement and other facial characteristics of the child and matched them with the pre-loaded disorders data to identify potential problems and support the clinical decision. This successful experiment proved that there greater opportunities that await utlizing smartphone cameras as a supplementary diagnostic tool.
- Using Artificial Intelligence to Help Smart Medical Devices
Artificial intelligence can help to improve the functioning of Smart Medical devices by leveraging previous patient’s data and interpreting it in a meaningful way to predict and alert the doctor about developing complications before they happen. In turn, this should help to reduce the mortality rate. These smart devices can also help to reduce hospital costs by predicting or preventing major events like cardiac arrest, respiratory arrest, or sepsis and more. The population of the US is aging fast. Today, we have more than 3 million people over the age of 85, and predictions say there will be 9 million by 2030. There is a shortage of emergency rooms and ICU’s out there, so automation can only help to ease this growing problem.