Hospitals and other providers should embrace healthcare artificial intelligence tools that provide clinical decision support, diagnostic imaging analysis, patient monitoring, and process automation to improve efficiency, advised the Boston Consulting Group.
Hospitals and other providers should embrace healthcare artificial intelligence tools that provide clinical decision support, diagnostic imaging analysis, patient monitoring, and process automation to improve efficiency, advised the Boston Consulting Group in a new report.
Providers should also take advantage of the evolution toward prevention and remote care by expanding their outpatient, home care, and virtual consultation offerings, BCG argued.
In terms of clinical decision support, AI-driven enhancements to clinical decision making could help reduce hospital readmissions and increase cost savings.
AI-enabled CDS software could support clinicians’ decision making, assist them in making a faster, more accurate diagnosis, reduce testing and treatments resulting from misdiagnosis, and lower pain and suffering by starting treatments earlier.
In terms of diagnostic imaging analysis, AI can help identify conditions such as cancer, brain injury, or heart disease earlier and with more accuracy than doctors alone, according to BCG. The Food and Drug Administration recently approved a medical device that uses AI for early diagnosis of retinopathy.
Michael Abramoff, founder and CEO of IDx Technologies, which developed the AI-based device, told an Federal Trade Commission hearing in November that the product, an autonomous diagnostic AI system, can be used at the point of care and no human reviewer or oversight is necessary. This shifts specialty diagnostics from the academic setting to the primary care setting, increasing the number of patients who can be tested and reducing testing costs, he said.
Abramoff said that he had to raise $22 million to develop his system and get FDA approval, which he received last year, almost two decades after he first came up with the idea.
AI can also be used to help patients outside the doctor’s office or hospital. Virtual agents can be used to conduct an initial consultation with a patient, screen out those who do not need to see a doctor, and provide information to physicians about who needs treatment. In addition, wearables or other devices can trigger alerts and interventions based on data such as anomalies in patient vital signs.
AI can also help automate the writing and review of healthcare records. Physicians spend one-third of their time on paperwork, and payers have a significant administrative burden in handling claims. AI-based automation could have a major impact in these areas, BCG noted.
Computer vision, voice recognition, and natural language processing are enabling the automation of tedious tasks and processes. Chatbots can answer consumers’ questions related to bills or password resets. AI tools, in combination with advances in robotics, can enhance support function performance.
In biopharma and medtech, AI can help streamline operations, such as the supply chain, beyond the gains created by traditional analytics.
Biopharma should benefit significantly from AI-driven efficiency in areas such as research and development, sales and marketing, and manufacturing, explained BCG.
The introduction of intelligent monitoring and diagnostic devices will generate treatment savings, with value previously captured by providers flowing to medtech. On the other hand, technology companies will increasingly offer products and solutions that encroach on the domain of medtech, BCG forecasted.
A number of recent market reports predict robust growth for healthcare artificial intelligence, ranging between a 47 percent and 50 percent compound annual growth rate.
The reports also agree on the leading vendors in the healthcare AI market: AWS, Google, General Vision, GE Healthcare, IBM, Intel, Microsoft, Nvidia, Siemens Healthineers, and Philips.
“The journey to integrate AI into strategies and operations must be a sustained one. But even companies that have yet to invest in AI decisively can make some smart, low-risk moves to either enhance the positive value shifts or minimize the negative impacts,” BCG concluded.
Date: HIT Infrastructure