Artificial Intelligence(AI) is creating positive waves in healthcare. It is bringing in new paradigms in the daily healthcare operations. As digital healthcare gains pace, a huge amount of data is being generated every day in hospitals & other medical facilities. It is not easy to process such volumes of data manually and this is where AI can come in. Today, we will look at the top 12 benefits of AI in healthcare in 2021.
How does AI help in healthcare? Let’s have a tour!
1. Healthcare Accessibility
Many underdeveloped & developing countries are grappling with healthcare problems. Technology can solve them at a fraction of the cost of building traditional infrastructure.
AI innovations can be utilized to develop smart & efficient digital healthcare ecosystems. It can be used to detect symptoms of diseases & prescribe appropriate medications remotely. As AI technology evolves with each passing year, it is expected to be very beneficial in healthcare diagnostics. Healthcare apps can be used to improve accessibility to medical guidance amongst the poorest population.
2. Insights Into Clinical Health Data
Currently, clinicians are overwhelmed with the huge amount of clinical data being generated in the healthcare premises. An exponential rise in raw data is useless without any proper mechanism to process it. Smart AI algorithms can mitigate this by reading data and providing insights. Artificial intelligence can detect patterns that are not quite obvious to the human eye. These actionable insights can help both the patients & clinicians to decide the best possible course of healthcare.
For instance, AI can not only monitor the glucose levels but also follow the trend- whether it is going up or down, and suggest prompt actions.
3. Predict Healthcare Risks Early
One of the major benefits of using AI in healthcare is that it can efficiently gather & store data of a patient over time which can be utilized to get insights into the current & previous health problems. Also, when an AI collects & interprets data of millions of people, it can accurately predict potential health problems that one might have in the future.
There are already AI-based applications that can anticipate noncontagious & genetic diseases. Such apps are only going to witness a growth in 2021 to aid the health experts in taking measures to minimize risks in the future. Predictive analysis also enhances the operational efficiency of healthcare facilities.
4. AI-assisted Surgeries
There is a rising interest in AI-based robotics in surgeries. AI Surgical Systems are very efficient in performing the smallest & the most accurate movements. Complicated operations can be conducted with minimal blood loss & lower risks of side effects. The patients also recover faster as operations happen with pinpoint accuracy.
According to reports, it is estimated that the market for surgical robots is set to grow to $24 billion by 2025.
5. Pandemic Detection
Covid-19 has underscored the importance of early warning systems to deal with pandemics in a better way. For example, Bluedot is an application that successfully predicted the 8 out of the first 10 cities that got infected with the novel coronavirus. AI-based early warning systems can interpret data to understand the nature of a new virus, scan media sources, assess threat vectors( like climate conditions, flight & movement data, the capacity of healthcare infrastructure, etc) to predict pandemic outbreaks accurately.
6. AI For The Disabled
With the advancement in AI, disabled people won’t be that “disabled” anymore. AI-based exoskeleton robots are the future for them. Smart prosthesis coupled with robust sensors can enable patients to have reactive limbs, better vision, and much more. Companion robots are a reality now and their in-built capabilities can help the elderly in controlling blood pressure, check sugar levels, and provide reminders for daily medications.
7. AI Coupled With AR & VR
Artificial intelligence coupled with Augmented/Virtual Reality has the potential to revolutionize telehealth in this decade. From improving healthcare services to educating medical students in real-time simulations, it has a lot of applications.
AR & VR technology can help stroke victims mitigate motor deficiencies. Simulated settings can help with effective stimulations that no physical therapy can offer. Data gathered from such techniques can be used by the therapists to develop the best plans for the patients.
8. Drug development
The traditional process of drug development is a lengthy one. It can take years of research to find a formula that works for a specific disease. A longer development time also implies a high cost of drugs that can’t be accessed by poor people. With the help of AI, scientists & researchers can identify the potential remedies/vaccine candidates in the early stages. They can thus focus on the drugs/vaccines that are promising while discarding the irrelevant ones.
9. Medical Device Design
AI can help in designing medical devices for the future. By monitoring data of existing devices, complaints, adverse events, glitches, and errors, AI algorithms can provide design suggestions that can be implemented for better results.
For instance, AI can easily assess massive databases to learn the particular features of medical devices that have been problematic.
10. Cost Reduction
According to Frost & Sullivan, AI has the capability to improve healthcare outcomes by 30- 40% while reducing the overall cost of treatment by a whopping 50%! Enhancements in precision & efficiency imply fewer human errors, which will reduce footfalls in the healthcare premises, eventually reducing their burden. Doctors can also access information on vulnerable patients to limit readmissions in hospitals.
11. Clinical Trials
For critical patients who have tried all options of treatment, clinical trials of new approaches might be the only silver lining in the dark. However, it is pretty challenging to search and enroll for such trials. Patients need to search for government databases and then have to go through an extensive screening process to satisfy the inclusion/exclusion criteria. All of these can be made easy with a centralized application that connects patients with the relevant trials. AI can automatically screen patients by studying their medical records and saving time.
12. AI-based Fitness Schedules
Fitness regimes play a significant role in improving the overall health of a person. When AI can access medical records and anticipate future problems, it can design fitness routines that can be implemented regularly to minimize risks of the future. Small efforts on a daily basis can go a long way in mitigating the problems of the future.
Artificial Intelligence has disrupted every sector and healthcare is no exception. Yes, there are risks associated with it that need to be worked out. But, AI has to be an integral part of healthcare in the long run because of the wide range of advantages of using AI in healthcare. From speeding up the development of life‐saving treatments to making improvements in patient care, AI has left its mark everywhere!
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