Healthcare has always involved a mix of data-driven decisions and human judgement, making it a particularly promising field for artificial intelligence. According to digital transformation app developers such as Blue Label Labs, AI is already making healthcare more accessible to the American public. In this article, we’ll cover three of the most important impacts of artificial intelligence on the healthcare industry.
Americans pay more for healthcare than the citizens of any other developed country, and reducing costs is critical for improving outcomes and access to care. Artificial intelligence will continue to play a major role in minimizing healthcare costs throughout the 2020s and beyond.
In fact, the American healthcare system spends roughly $500 billion per year on unnecessary administrative expenses, artificially inflating the cost of care. Artificial intelligence streamlines a wide range of administrative tasks, reducing the need for human administrators and minimizing a variety of other costs.
Of course, healthcare organizations aren’t always known for implementing cutting-edge technologies, and artificial intelligence requires investment at every level. Effective utilization depends on stakeholders and decision makers with a wide range of specialities. IT professionals, data scientists, and healthcare workers need to work together to develop a strong AI plan.
With that in mind, it could take a decade or more for hospitals, clinics, and other practices to fully integrate AI into their practices. Over time, however, it should lead to a gradual but sustainable trend toward lower healthcare prices and better access for all Americans.
Clinical providers collect more data than ever from patients, but it isn’t always easy to put that information into practice. AI systems are significantly more effective than human agents when it comes to gathering large volumes of data and identifying key trends.
In the same way that marketers use customer information to develop more personalized campaigns, healthcare providers can use that data to inform their treatment strategies. Artificial intelligence can reliably identify trends and leverage that information for more responsive treatments while reducing costs across the board.
With that in mind, it’s no surprise that artificial intelligence is now heavily involved in the decision making process for healthcare providers around the world. Data-driven insights allow providers to make more accurate care choices based on all relevant patient information.
In fact, artificial intelligence plays a crucial role in diagnosing and treating patients along with analyzing large-scale trends. These functions will only become more powerful as we develop more efficient relationships between human agency and the insights of artificial intelligence. They’re particularly useful in fields like ophthalmology, pathology, and radiology that rely on data-driven assessments.
Precision medicine, for example, is a developing clinical approach that uses a wide range of data points to create the perfect treatment plan for each unique patient. While some of these principles can be applied by human clinicians, only AI can implement them on a large scale without increasing costs or decreasing effectiveness.
Part of this is due to the fact that making accurate decisions in a clinical setting involves the synthesis of a large number of variables and data points. In short, we are now producing too much data for even the most experienced providers to evaluate without the aid of artificial intelligence.
Improving Organizational Health
Using AI to analyze data will obviously have a positive impact on outcomes and prices, but it will also make the healthcare practice itself feel more human. Spending less time on tedious administrative tasks and outsourcing those jobs to artificial intelligence will allow healthcare organizations to return their focus to the patient.
From that perspective, the role of artificial intelligence is closer to support than actual decision-making. In other words, AI won’t replace the role humans play in developing treatments—it will simply give us the information we need to make more precise decisions.
Data security is a growing concern for virtually every industry, and it’s particularly relevant for healthcare organizations. It’s critical to keep patient data safe, and attacks have grown far more complex with the rise of AI and other powerful tools.
Phishing, for example, can now be automated through the use of artificial intelligence. This makes attacks more sophisticated and harder for users to identify. On the other hand, AI can also be leveraged in the fight against phishing and other cyber threats. Organizations that fail to integrate the most advanced security practices will have trouble protecting sensitive information and avoiding disruptive attacks.
With massive disruptions already taking place in administration, data analysis, organizational security, and other high-impact areas, it’s impossible to overstate the impact of AI on healthcare. These are just a few of the biggest AI-related changes for healthcare providers to be aware of in 2020.