Robotics and artificial intelligence are having huge impacts across the health care sector, from diagnostic testing and robotic surgery to tissue sampling and cancer research. In dermatology, for example, AI is being used right now in a non-clinical form by trained medical practitioners to detect skin tumor through an experiment mobile phone model of it in real time. Such technologies have tremendous potential to significantly improve healthcare, save lives, and enhance patient care.
But as amazing as this technology is, its impact on the healthcare industry still remains limited. Many in the medical profession believe that with the significant number of specialists and staff required to perform robotic tasks, the money spent on research and development will be limited. Additionally, the limited number of tasks already automated by robots (such as the PAP pressure catheter used by many hospitals) limits the types of tasks that can be automated further. Moreover, healthcare organizations continue to face technical challenges such as how to control and interface with complex robotic systems and how to control the interaction of multiple robots.
However, advances in Artificial Intelligence and robotics promise to change all that. Recent developments have shown that artificial intelligence can be used to improve not only existing services but also to completely revolutionize many other services and functions. By combining sophisticated sensors and processors with onboard software, artificial intelligence-based robots will be able to operate much like actual medical staff. They will be able to diagnose problems, record data and handle other duties as they are needed. Even more impressive, these technologically advanced robots may eventually be able to replace humans in virtually all areas of healthcare.
While exciting advances in robotics technology have had a positive impact on the health care industry, they still face some significant hurdles before they can fully replace humans. One of the biggest challenges is in teaching computers to work together as a team. Humans are still best suited for this kind of task because of their greater cognitive ability and quicker response time. Even so, new technologies are steadily refining the robot's artificial intelligence, giving it the ability to work with a variety of people and do a variety of tasks. One day, a robot might even be able to replace a healthcare worker entirely. But for now, robots are simply best employed in support roles where they can help healthcare workers carry out their own tasks without further danger to themselves.
Another important factor in the development of artificially intelligent androids involves developing a 100-percent accurate robot. Currently, most devices are accuracy below 40 percent. Achieving a 100 percent accuracy level is next to impossible, especially given the pace at which computers are developing. To achieve a full robotic accuracy level, a deep learning computer science project involving multiple programs would have to be developed.
In order to fully utilize the power of robotic technology and prevent the employment of humans in the healthcare industry (and vice versa), artificial intelligence must grow by leaps and bounds. Currently, researchers are working on machine learning, which refers to the process of an AI system being able to "remember" past activities. This is key, as previous research has shown that patients who remember things better retain that information longer. Researchers also hope to find ways to give robots intelligence that can maybe surpass human limitations. This will allow robots to be capable of actions beyond the basic job requirement of feeding the doctor a patient's prescription. Ultimately, any advances made towards a fully robotic healthcare industry will benefit both patients and healthcare workers alike.