Home Artificial Intelligence AI in Medicine Must Prioritize the Other ‘A’: Augmentation

AI in Medicine Must Prioritize the Other ‘A’: Augmentation

AI in Medicine Must Prioritize the Other ‘A’: Augmentation

AI’s tantalizing promise – and its missteps – are more apparent than ever, as OpenAI’s ChatGPT makes headlines for its ability to cheat on college exams or conduct an imposter job interview. But, for anyone who feels inclined to dismiss AI’s potential, I might urge caution.

Bill Gates called recent developments in AI “every bit as essential” because the emergence of the web – a press release that ought to draw the eye of innovators across every discipline. In the sphere of healthcare, our relationship with AI has had a mix of successes and setbacks, particularly in applications for diagnostics.

To maximise our successes and realize the potential of AI, we must make a distinction between “artificial intelligence” and “augmented intelligence” to deliver meaningful change to our healthcare system. The difference between “artificial” and “augmented” may feel pedantic to some, but medical device innovation requires precision in all the things we do.

Artificial vs. Augmented

Artificial intelligence implies an alternative choice to human intelligence – a notion that ChatGPT embraces wholly with a chatbot that may answer easy questions and even write essays with a number of inputs. In contrast, augmented intelligence works alongside humans to support their decision making.

In robotic-assisted surgery, as an illustration, the goal of augmented intelligence isn’t to exchange the skill and expertise of surgeons, honed over years of experience and 1000’s of repetitions. Those skills and experiences are precisely what augmented intelligence can leverage to enhance the usual of care across any provider facility, including community hospitals, large health systems, ambulatory surgery centers (ASCs) or office-based labs (OBLs). AI platforms can provide real-time feedback during surgical procedures, pulling from an unlimited database of prior procedures. They depend on the surgeon’s skill and decision-making ability to create recommendations for procedural maneuvers and may even evolve best practices for the best way to complete some procedures. There may be nothing “artificial” a few procedural advice based on a maneuver from an actual surgeon in an actual surgery.

Augmented intelligence is the precise approach for improving health outcomes in surgical procedures since it reduces variability across hospitals, health systems, ASCs and OBLs. Any patient anywhere on this planet can receive the very best standard of care with platforms that empower informed decision-making.

Technology to preserve our surgeons

Against the backdrop of a major physician shortage within the U.S., we must find ways to slow the retirement rates that spiked across the pandemic and attract young people to the medical field, and augmented intelligence can play a job.

Manual surgeries are physically and mentally taxing – often contributing to ailments corresponding to orthopedic injuries that may drive surgeons to early retirement. The physician population can also be aging – greater than 40% of lively physicians will probably be 65 or older by 2030. Sitting in an ergonomic chair and equipped with insights to perform every surgery to the perfect of their ability, surgeons may extend their careers with augmented intelligence platforms. The taxing nature of manual surgery may severely limit the variety of procedures one surgeon can complete in a day. Making the procedures less demanding may help to shut the gap between the variety of patients who need surgeries and the variety of physicians who can perform them.

Relative to the joy of Silicon Valley and massive tech, a profession in medicine may feel uninspiring. By incorporating augmented intelligence, machine learning and other cutting-edge technology to the medical field we are able to make the career more appealing to younger generations. Finding ways to draw the digital-native generations to healthcare and maintain a pipeline of talent is critical to our success.

Artificial intelligence isn’t a one-size-fit-all solution and nearly every industry will feel its impact. In healthcare, probably the most meaningful and disruptive change will come from AI that’s built to enhance our surgeons, not supplant them.



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