Artificial intelligence has transformed everything from digital marketing to app design and development, and its impact will only continue to increase over time. Healthcare is no exception, as AI gives professionals the tools they need to provide more efficient care and streamline a variety of practices.
In this article, we’ll cover three of the most important effects of artificial intelligence on the healthcare industry. While AI has already led to large-scale changes, it’s impossible to predict what the field will look like in five or ten years.
Interacting with Patients
Patient engagement represents a major inefficiency for healthcare providers, with missed appointments alone costing roughly $150 billion per year. Artificial intelligence makes it easier for providers to stay in contact with patients and provide them with crucial information.
Some providers are already using AI to remind patients about appointments, set future appointments, and keep patients on schedule with their prescriptions. As artificial intelligence becomes more accessible, it will eventually become common for patients to carry out complex conversations with chatbots rather than waiting for a human support agent.
Humans are more effective than artificial intelligence in certain areas, but AI can analyze large volumes of data much more effectively than we can. With that in mind, it can be incredibly useful in a wide range of healthcare applications.
For example, AI systems can use patient information to predict future outcomes such as outbreaks and pandemics. Similarly, they could identify new treatments that human doctors may not consider. Artificial intelligence has the potential to save innumerable lives through more accurate diagnoses.
AI’s effects are most obvious in the patient-facing areas of healthcare, but it also offers considerable advantages for the administrative side of the industry. These expenses represent a significant percentage of overhead for virtually all providers including private practices, hospitals, and nursing homes.
While AI likely won’t phase out administrative staff in the foreseeable future, it can already facilitate a variety of tasks and reduce the need for human employees. For example, AI algorithms can help allocate staff more efficiently, digitize healthcare records, and reduce waste throughout the entire organization.
Artificial intelligence has already transformed the way we approach healthcare, and its impact is only beginning to be felt. These are just a few of the most important trends for healthcare professionals to be aware of in 2020 and beyond.
Written by Catherine Metcalf of Blue Label Labs