WHETHER to maintain patient records or help analyze sophisticated medical images like those from a CT scan or an MRI machine, computers have always played an important role in healthcare. The medical fraternity understands how computers help make their job better and easier. For them, the transition to AI-powered devices has been almost natural and is a journey most healthcare professionals look forward to. According to a new report published by Allied Market Research, the global AI in healthcare market was valued at US$1,441 million in 2016, and is estimated to reach at US$22.79 billion by 2023, registering a CAGR of 48.7 percent from 2017 to 2023. The study indicates that North America was the highest contributor in the AI in healthcare market in 2016.
Healthcare is undergoing an incredible digital transformation that is altering virtually every aspect of the industry, making the once-impossible probable and reorienting everything from diagnosis and treatments. It's evident that, in the years ahead, this sector will continually and increasingly be defined by the development and implementation of new technologies. Healthcare providers indicate as much in their spending trends. By 2027, global healthcare storage is expected to have a collective market of more than $9 billion, up from $2.4 billion in 2018. Similarly, both Forrester and Gartner expect that many providers will boost their technology budgets by nearly 10% in the years ahead.
The health industry in the UK is under immense pressure, with staff shortages and funding restraints leading to unsustainable heavy workloads and low retention rates. It is clear that digital transformation is key to supporting healthcare professionals by relieving the administrative burden, reducing unpaid staff overtime and improving employee job satisfaction. The early August pledge of £250m for NHS artificial intelligence is one step towards realising this metamorphosis that has been detailed by Health and Social Care Secretary Matt Hancock's Future of Healthcare document and the NHS Long Term Plan. Artificial intelligence and automation already play a role in health. A highly publicised example of this is Ai-assisted robotic surgery to perform complex procedures.
The amount of data that insurance companies, doctors, hospitals and patients have at their disposal is enormous. Payers have access to billions of pieces of claims data from doctors and pharmacies, while healthcare professionals across the country can collectively tap into millions of sophisticated electronic medical records that track patients and their progress. So valuable is all this information that some industry experts talk about data as the "new oil." The analogy is fitting: both are the raw material for creating value. That said, the ability to tie all these disparate pieces of information together is monumentally difficult.
Amazon is offering a new software that can mine medical records for information, the Wall Street Journal reports. The software can reportedly scan digitized patient records and pull out data, a service that healthcare professionals can use when considering treatments and hospitals can use to cut costs. "We're able to completely, automatically look inside medical language and identify patient details with incredibly high accuracy," Matt Wood, general manager of artificial intelligence at Amazon Web Services, told the Wall Street Journal. Amazon used deep learning to train its software to analyze medical records. And according to Taha Kass-Hout, former chief health informatics officer for the FDA who was hired by Amazon earlier this year, the software performed as well as or better than similar programs.