BBC Click asks if artificial intelligence can help save the NHS. Plus a test of robo-reporters and a look inside a highly automated factory in China.
David Champeaux, director, Global Cognitive Health Solutions at IPsoft, the digital labour company suggests that AI may be the “miracle pill” for the NHS.
“The NHS is at risk of a winter of discontent,” said Champeaux. “Our healthcare system is buckling under immense pressure resulting from growing demand and capacity constraints. One way to address the staff shortages is to train digital employees equipped with artificial intelligence (AI) to assist doctors and nurses and relieve them from the high volume of routine and administrative tasks and free up more time for patients.”
“AI-enabled virtual agents will simultaneously address access and quality challenges in the system and open the door for a more efficient and effective service to citizens. This winter we have seen almost 55,000 operations cancelled and an increased pressure on ambulances and A&E departments. AI can relieve pressure on frontline staff in hospitals and primary care practices by handling routine enquiries through virtual agents.”
AI’s crucial future role in the NHSAI, Champeaux goes on to suggest, may provide the long-term cure for the resource crisis facing the NHS, as reportedly there is a shortage of at least 50,000 doctors and nurses.
“Cognitive agents can hold a human-like conversation with the patients, providing the most up-to-date, personalised and timely guidance, based on the insights available to patients and the care team. When these agents join the care team, this relieves the healthcare workforce from repetitive, administrative tasks that can be automated, which allows doctors and nurses more time to care for those in need.