Artificial intelligence(AI) promises to transform medicine. It is already diagnosing cancers and arrhythmias, providing digital health coaching and predicting; which patients are at the highest risk of heart failure. Soon, patients with common symptoms can expect to receive advice via AI, and physicians will likely use data from wearable devices to diagnose or treat diseases.
But for all the benefits AI can provide, patients fear the specter of robots relaying dire prognoses; while physicians are wary of more technological burdens. Steven Lin, MD, clinical assistant professor of medicine and vice chief for technology innovation in Stanford’s Division of Primary Care and Population Health; asserts that we need to implement AI wisely to avoid the downsides. Used right, AI can improve care, lower costs and reduce physician burnout, They said.
Physicians spend face to face
The first is clinical documentation. For every hour physicians spend face to face with patients; so they spend another two hours doing clerical work most of which is spent writing notes. AI-power digital scribes that can listen in on physician-patient conversations; also automatically generate a clinical note can unshackle physicians from the electronic health record.
The second is the way it can adjust physicians’ patient loads. AI algorithms can ensure that physicians have adequate time to address the needs of each patient by increasing or decreasing their patient load base; so on the complexity of the patients’ conditions. Such models can also be use to determine the level of staffing support medical assistants, nurses, advance practice providers, clinical pharmacists, social workers need base on the intensity of care provide; which can contribute to better work-life balance for physicians.
The third is practice management. AI-driven tools can automate tasks such as pre-visit planning; insurance-eligibility checks, insurance claims, prior authorizations, appointment reminders, billing, coding, data reporting and analytics. Automating repetitive tasks that are suffocating physicians; also their practices is one of the most anticipated applications of AI.
Health care costs
Management of chronic diseases accounts for most health care costs in the United States; 1 in 7 dollars are spent caring for people with diabetes alone; so with the total estimate cost for diabetes over $300 billion a year. When AI-power population health management and digital health coaching have integrate into health systems, they have already demonstrate reductions in cost per patient through reduce clinic and hospital visits for patients with chronic illnesses such as diabetes.
Health care is fundamentally a social enterprise, power by commit, caring and collaborative connections between the humans involved. Implement wisely, AI can free up physicians’ cognitive and emotional space for their patients. Undivided attention with compassion is the most powerful diagnostic and therapeutic tool physicians can provide their patients.
AI will be most effective when it enhances physicians‘ ability to focus their full attention on the patient by shifting the physicians’ responsibilities away from transactional tasks toward personalize care that lies at the heart of human healing. The challenge will be for humans to have the wisdom and willingness to discern AI’s optimal role in modern medicine, and to determine when it strengthens and when it undermines patient care.