Artificial Intelligence has benefited the healthcare industry by improving patient experiences and access to healthcare services. Artificial Intelligence (AI) is defined as, “… the capability of a computer program to perform tasks or reasoning processes that we usually associate with intelligence in a human being.” (McKinsey & Company). The use of AI in medical practices has led to higher productivity and efficiency in patient care. On the other hand, AI can have negative implications on the healthcare industry such as possible risks to patients and ethical dilemmas. Read more below to learn about the positive and negative impacts of artificial intelligence in healthcare.
Treatment in healthcare can become personalized due to the innovative technology of medicine such as wearables and implants. Today, there are applications that enhance and improve healthcare delivery from day-to-day operations to population-health management. The innovation of AI is expanding throughout Europe, China, and the United States. Many countries are investing in AI research, and AI technology is now pivotal for healthcare decision-makers. Apps leverage AI to help patients manage care themselves, e-triage AI tools, provide virtual healthcare agents, and bionic organs to help patients with diseases. One of the positive impacts of AI is the innovative tools and technologies that continue to evolve today.
Medical practices will take advantage of AI to make predictions. This could range from predicting emergency department volumes to predicting which treatments might be the most effective for people who have certain diseases. Healthcare teams are improving the interpretation of patient scans by using natural language processing. Radiologists are using these processes to identify secondary issues, when in the past these may have gone unnoticed. Having AI as a tool not only helps healthcare professionals perform better at their jobs, but it also predicts health complications long before they start impacting the patient’s life.
Risks of AI
Although the progression of Artificial Intelligence in the healthcare industry has provided many benefits to workers and patients, AI also poses challenges and risks. Since AI is dependent on human beings using them, there is bound to be mistakes and misuse. Limited involvement of clinicians in AI development, a lack of training in medical AI, and a lack of awareness among patients could all lead to an incorrect medical assessment which could harm the patient. There is often a lack of transparency regarding AI development and AI decision making. This could lead to a lack of understanding and trust in predictions and decisions generated by AI. Additionally, new developments of AI solutions show potential risks of a lack of data privacy and security including sharing personal data without consent, data breaches, and cyberattacks. As a result, Healthcare organizations may eventually need more stringent audit and compliance regulations.
Artificial Intelligence has paved the way for many breakthroughs in the healthcare industry. It has benefited patients, medical personnel, and healthcare practices. AI can help patients with diseases and manage their appointments. Predictions can be made about a patient’s body or treatment, or AI can predict the volume of patients in a hospital. On the contrary, AI can also pose risks such as AI errors, misuse, lack of transparency, and privacy and security exposures.
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