The Rise of AI within health care

4 Oct 2017

The rise of artificial intelligence 

We are witnessing an accelerated increase in technology innovation, which has pushed the envelope of what is possible across all industries. With Healthcare being one of the largest, this area is ripe for disruption in a way that will change our everyday lives.

In recent years, wearables have become increasingly pervasive. This, along with smartphone activity trackers, sports apps such as Strava (See this review of 2017’s best running apps if that’s your thing), and other connected products, has helped people to start taking ownership of their healthcare, through the visibility of their health statistics – also know as biohacking.  One powerful outcome is permission-based access for organisations to view employee behaviour and health status, which enables them to make recommendations and Just In Time interventions.

Artificial intelligence in healthcare

Before we all start thinking that the world will be taken over by Skynet, we have to understand how AI could be beneficial.

We are quite some time away from Strong AI, but Weak AI is already in some of our most common places we interact with. Think about self-driving cars, Google’s search engine, Google Gmail, Amazon’s recommendation engine etc.  With the rise of Microsoft’s Cortana, Facebook M, Apple’s Siri, Google Home, and Amazon’s Echo, users now expect services to extract questions from speech, using natural language processing, as well as carry out tasks – such as playing the top 10 tracks in the UK.

Seeing how these underlying AI technologies can be applied to healthcare will provide Health Tech organisations with a range of specific information to help them make a good decision to benefit the end user.

Here are 5 reasons to use AI within healthcare:

  1. To provide precision medicine based on your genetics and genomics
  2. Complete data mining on medical records to allow better and faster health services
  3. Design treatment plans by combining attributes from the patient’s file with clinical expertise, external research and data
  4. Provide mental health care programs such as what we’re doing here at Unmind, to help people better understand and support their own mental health
  5. Allow for remote and virtual healthcare with services like Babylon health and Ada, meaning that people can access a “doctor” 24/7

For me, this is extremely exciting and we’re only just getting started on it.  As we persevere, huge medical discoveries and treatment breakthroughs will become as common as reading about the rise and fall of English Rugby.

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