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The Robot Doctor Will See You Now

By Toronto Globe & Mail

June 30, 2011

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Computer scientists are developing artificial intelligence (AI) systems that could take more responsibility in diagnosing diseases, assigning treatments, and facilitating general hospital functions.

The new AI systems can identify key patterns in data and predict trends, in addition to working more quickly and efficiently than their human counterparts. The AI systems also could improve medical diagnoses, giving patients access to quicker medical treatments, as well as remove human bias that could affect some doctors' decisions.

The Mayo Clinic recently conducted a study to see if AI systems could effectively assist doctors. The study involved teachable software that mimics the human brain to help diagnose cardiac infections and could eliminate the need for an invasive exam. The study examined data from about 200 patients, and the software correctly diagnosed the infection in almost all cases. Other systems could be used to lower medical errors, improve the accuracy of medical tests, and help hospitals reduce inefficiencies.

From Toronto Globe & Mail
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