How Artificial Intelligence is Revolutionizing Healthcare IT

How Artificial Intelligence is Revolutionizing Healthcare IT

Artificial intelligence is a potent tool. We notice it in the changing landscape of the digital world. It features automatically generated articles, incredible images, and other types of online content. However, it’s medical science where this budding technology makes the most significant impact. 

AI affects healthcare in more ways than one. This fast-developing branch will leave a huge mark on the 2020s and the decades to come. After all, the COVID-19 pandemic and the resulting battle against misinformation have given it a good, swift kick in the pants. 

In the post-pandemic times, AI research is gaining momentum. We may still be far from android-like robots seen in sci-fi movies, but we’re heading there. Still, it’s interesting to see exactly how artificial intelligence is revolutionizing the world of healthcare. Here are a few examples and predictions of what is coming.

Machine learning improves diagnostics

Almost all the countries in the world are experiencing population growth. The UN predicts it will peak at nearly 10.4 billion by the mid-2080s. Consequently, the medical profession has to help an ever-expanding number of patients which, in turn, means doctors have to deal with more information. Eventually, this sea of data becomes a breeding ground for human error. 

This is where machine learning, aka ML, a subdivision of AI, enters the picture. It “trains” digital models by feeding them data. These systems can then process that information in a matter of seconds, detect signs of danger (i.e., malignant cells), and help professionals better diagnose their patients. It’s all about observing patterns.

Additionally, AI-powered medical imaging solutions are transforming areas such as radiology, cardiology, and mammography. For example, systems like NovaMG PRO breast imaging systems can improve doctor efficiency, lower false negatives in cancer detection, assist in quality assurance of images, and improve cost-effectiveness in healthcare.

AI impacts healthcare not just in identifying diseases but in other activities, too. We’re talking about treating ailments as varied as kidney disease and uncommon skin conditions. That’s because ML offers improved diagnostics, comparable in accuracy to the work of experienced physicians. It can also suggest optimized forms of treatment – and even predict future risks.

Drug development ends up being a lot quicker

Speaking of treatments, it’s important to note how AI can also impact medication. Normally, pills and tablets work on a molecular level. They are external substances that affect internal molecules to treat symptoms, interacting with our bodies in different ways. It’s in that process where AI can intervene. 

That’s because algorithms can improve the odds of medication having an optimum effect. Artificial intelligence is powerful enough to analyze billions of potential molecular interactions with all sorts of drugs, even tailoring the results for each patient. Through this process, practitioners can fine-tune treatments and improve dosage precision.

Due to its ability to process endless quantities of data, artificial intelligence also fast-tracks drug development. Performing digital experiments and analysis can help discover new medicines and treatments, something that would be much slower and costly if we were to do it manually.

Wearable devices boost patient engagement

Wearable devices are another example of how AI positively affects healthcare. These devices can keep a range of metrics in check and issue warnings whenever something goes wrong. Move ECG is one such useful gadget, employed to monitor heart health. Dexcom ONE Real Time-Continuous Glucose Monitoring is used to keep blood sugar levels under control. Fitness trackers such as Fitbit Sense 2 are quite popular among athletes. The global pandemic has seen the rise of these little machines that can be used by patients and clinicians alike.

Still, it’s not necessary to invest in a separate device to reap the benefits of AI. An average smartphone can also turn into a personal health assistant with the help of apps. Clue is a popular period tracking platform. Skincare Routine uses AI to improve the way you take care of your skin. Talkspace is a good tool for boosting mental health in the workplace. All are either free or cost very little, and are accessible day and night. This makes them easy to use and, as a consequence, can boost patient engagement and help them take better care of their health.

Training in the digital realm

Naturalistic simulations based on VR and AR environments are another way medical professionals can harvest the power of AI. They create realistic scenarios for trainees, letting them learn through trial and error. 

The software itself can “learn” from each trainee, improving its impact on the go. The app adjusts challenges to boost performance and fit each user. Training is possible anywhere, cutting costs and enabling long-distance learning. A global network can be established with little more than a broadband internet connection. The more people participate, the more efficient it becomes.

Automation saves time

It’s no secret that introducing tech into healthcare has saved countless lives as well as money and time. Still, to this day, between 34% and 55% of physicians’ time is taken up by record management. Loss of productivity and a decrease in efficiency are but two of the outcomes of this waste of time. This is where natural language processing can improve things drastically. 

Doctors can use AI-based systems to automatically deal with a large chunk of administrative tasks. Streamlining healthcare information management is beneficial for both care providers and insurance companies.

Also, there is no need to wait on MRIs, CT scans, ultrasounds, and the results of many other studies. With the help of AI, these can be available in a matter of hours. This cuts down both the testing times and the chances of a rapidly progressing illness getting out of control. For example, AI can help detect a particularly aggressive tumor early on, increasing the odds of survival for the patient. 

It costs less

Paving the way forward to delivering top-quality care is, of course, a priority. It’s, however, impossible to address this without taking a look at the numbers. The global healthcare market was valued at 15.4 billion in 2022. This is projected to expand at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 37.5% from 2023 to 2030.

Now more than ever, there’s an urgent need to reduce the costs for patients. Business Insider Intelligence reports that no less than 30% of the total budget is required to cover administrative chores. Appointments, patient registration, billing, dealing with complaints, credentialing, etc., all take up a lot of time. 
Of course, there is also the question of tackling software maintenance. This is where artificial intelligence can step in to automate processes and cut the bureaucracy. Challenges lie ahead, but with careful planning, the way AI affects healthcare is likely to be overwhelmingly positive. The faster it develops, the more lives it can save.

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