December 1, 2022 – It’s common for many people to fear the unknown, and exactly how artificial intelligence could transform healthcare and the medical experience is no exception.
People might fear, for example, that AI will remove all human interaction from healthcare in the future. That’s not true, say the experts. Physicians and other healthcare workers may fear that technology will replace their clinical judgment and experience. That’s also not true, experts say.
AI robots do not take over.
AI and machine learning remain technologies that add to human know-how. For example, AI can help track a patient over time better than a medical professional based on memory alone, can speed up image analysis, and is very good at prediction.
But AI will never replace human intuition in medicine, experts say.
“AI is emotionless. It’s fast and very, very smart, but it has no intuition,” says Naheed Kurji, chairman of the board of directors of the Alliance for Artificial Intelligence in healthcare and CEO of Cyclica Inc.
Machine learning, a form of artificial intelligence in which a computer learns over time as it receives more and more data, can seem threatening to someone who might not fully understand the technology. This is why education and greater awareness are key to allaying any concerns about this burgeoning technology.
“You have to have an understanding of human behavior and how to help people overcome their inherent fears of something new,” Kurji says.
All of this new science needs to be explained to the public, and machine learning is certainly one that deserves an explanation,” says Angeli Moeller, PhD, head of data and insights-generating integrations at Roche in Berlin, and vice president of the Board of the Alliance for Artificial Intelligence in Health.
“It helps to build on examples that the general population knows and technology that has developed,” she says. “On our smartphones, we benefit from a significant amount of machine learning – even if you just look at your Google search or your sat-nav.”
Moeller says it’s helpful to think of AI as an assistant to a doctor, nurse, caregiver, or even a patient trying to better understand a medical diagnosis, treatment plan, or prognosis. .
Moreover, with big data comes great responsibility. “Health care industry accountability is important,” she says.
With this in mind, the Alliance for Artificial Intelligence in Healthcare was created in 2019 as a forum for industry players – pharmaceutical companies, biotech companies and database entities – to come together and answer important questions about AI. The group seeks to answer some fundamental questions, including: how to ensure ethical and appropriate use of artificial intelligence in healthcare? How to ensure that this innovation reaches the patient as quickly as possible?
“If you think about your personal life, ten years ago your car didn’t have autopilot modes where it drove itself,” says Sastry Chilukuri, co-CEO of Medidata and founder and chairman of Acorn AI. “You didn’t really have an iPhone – which is like a computer in your hand – let alone have an Apple Watch – which is like another mini computer on your wrist pumping out all kinds of data.”
“Our world has changed dramatically over the past 15 years,” he says. “It’s very interesting, I think. It’s a good time to be alive.