Many tech enthusiasts are claiming that Artificial Intelligence (AI) can do a better job than doctors when it comes to diagnosing and treating patients. The reasoning behind this claim is that when doctors diagnose patients and write prescriptions, they rely only on a few symptoms and some physical clues. AI, on the other hand, would be able to take into account much more data and come up with a more accurate result.
Dr. Raul Parikh, a pediatrician from San Francisco, says that he constantly gets offers from entrepreneurs to try out new technologies and software. He says that in some regards AI can replace humans. For example, researches showed that when it comes to detecting breast cancer, AI was as good as radiologists.
He thinks that AI can be a great help for physicians in primary care like himself. Doctors spend too much time going through patient data. The main problem is that this information isn’t organized – it comes to them from many different sources (lab results, subjective patient concerns, data from the patients’ phones, blood-sugar meters, etc.). It is very difficult to keep up with it, and AI can be used to keep track of it and help doctors become more proactive.
For example, in the case of patients with asthma, AI could help doctors determine which type of asthma the patient really has, because just like with cancer, there many different types of asthma. With the help of AI, doctors could easily collect data from the patients’ blood, urine, and lung tissue, as well as try to understand the connection between asthma and the environment.
This way, doctors would become more proactive. They would be able to warn patients and their families in advance during certain environmental conditions. Moreover, with AI doing all of the data collection and predictions for them, doctors would have more time to personally interact with their patients and get better results.
- Tech enthusiast – a person who enjoys using technology and is willing to learn more about the ins and outs of a product than the average consumer
- Artificial Intelligence – the ability of a digital computer or a robot to perform tasks commonly associated with humans
- Clue – evidence
- Pediatrician – a doctor specializing in children and their diseases
- Primary care – health care provided by a medical professional with whom a patient has initial contact and who may refer the patient to a specialist
- Data – facts and statistics collected together for analysis
- Proactive – creating or controlling a situation rather than responding to it after it has happened
- Environment – the surroundings or conditions in which a person lives
- Interact – communicate
Questions for Discussion
- How does AI help doctors?
- What problems can arise if doctors rely on AI too much?
- Do you think AI will eventually replace doctors? Why or why not?
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