Report: 3 reasons AI in healthcare is no longer just 'hype'

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"Artificial intelligence" is no longer just a buzzword for healthcare, according to a report released in December by an independent government consultancy.

For the report, officials from ONC and HHS' Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality asked Jason, an independent group of researchers that advises the federal government on science and technology, to "consider how AI might shape the future of public health, community health and healthcare delivery," according to a Jan. 17 ONC blog post penned by agency officials.

Jason researchers concluded recent advancements in AI are significant and should not be dismissed as "another period of hype," according to the report. "Unlike previous eras of excitement over AI, the potential of AI applications in health may make this era different," they wrote.

Here are three overarching reasons why the healthcare industry is ready for AI transformation.

1. Physicians and patients are frustrated with legacy medical systems.

2. Smart devices that collect informative data are ubiquitous in American society.

3. Physicians and patients are comfortable with at-home AI services provided by consumer technology companies.

Moving forward, agencies under the HHS umbrella will work together to identify "possible opportunities for the use of AI" in biomedical research and medical care, according to the ONC's blog post, which encouraged readers to review the report's findings.

"We are excited about the possibilities that AI has to improve healthcare quality, help clinicians take the best care of their patients and empower patients to take control of their own health," the blog post reads.

To access Jason's report, click here.

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