Chatbots, big data, and service availability: М-Health Congress 2018 highlighted the main telemedicine trends
Telemedicine makes the healthcare system available for everyone, but one should not forget that in addition to that patients should receive comprehensive and efficient treatment. Such conclusion was drawn by speakers of the fourth annual international М-Health Congress 2018 dedicated to mobile technologies used in medicine.
The congress took place in Moscow on April 3 and gathered more than 300 attendees.
Conference participants, among whom one could find leading Russian physicians, medical lawyers, entrepreneurs, investors, developers of М-Нealth gadgets and software, spoke about trends in digital healthcare and ways of implementing new IT solutions in the field of medicine.
Participants included the Director of Technology Distribution at Yandex Grigoriy Bakunov, leading architect at IBM Client Center Gayane Harutyunyan, Head of the Expert council for digital economy and blockchain technologies of the State Duma of the Russian Federation Artem Koltsov, Head of the project Health at Mail.RU Group Evgeny Paperny.
Opportunities and use of AI in healthcare
According to CEO of Interlogic, Founder of Botkin.AI Sergey Sorokin, a number of problems arise when artificial intelligence is integrated in the healthcare system. For instance, neural network training requires large bulks of data. Besides, it is hardly possible to explain the logic of obtaining the result of using the AI technologies to be validated by physicians.
Some companies are already trying to develop artificial intelligence solutions intended for healthcare. For instance, IBM experiments with its supercomputer Watson in this field. Portfolio of Watson Health consists of such solutions as Watson in Oncology (diagnosis of cancer) and Watson for Clinical Trial Matching (comparison of clinical researches).
According to the leading architect at IBM Client Center Gayane Harutyunyan, the use of Clinical Trial Matching helped to speed up screening of diagrams to obtain clinical trial results from 60 to 24 minutes.
Chatbots are another application area of artificial intelligence in medicine. George Fomichev, founder of Endurance Robots, noted that chatbots could be deployed in hospitals, pharmacies, telemedicine, for disease prevention.
The most widespread scenarios of chatbots used in medicine include:
- arranging for a doctor’s appointment;
- arranging for a doctor home visit;
- collecting patient data;
- assisting doctors to select a treatment;
- a reminder to take meds.
According to George, whereas there were around 100 thousand chatbots in 2017, the number will grow to 10 million by 2019, and will reach 1 billion by 2021.
Specifics of dealing with data in medicine
The primary application area of Big Data in medicine is the creation of thematic databases. Besides, they can be used to evaluate the potential of new drugs before bringing them into market.
Such a solution is offered by Semantic Hub, a company that develops an AI driven service intended to automate the analysis of large information quantities. The program uses a search bot to analyze up to a million documents from the pharmacy industry, including patents, description of clinical trials, scientific materials and reports. Depending on the assigned task, the bot can connect with medical websites and forums.
Founder and CEO of the company Irina Efimenko reported that despite the largest possible amount of data is gathered, the bot needs several hours to process it. For instance, an employee will spend around 3 to 5 days on a single stage, i.e. to choose 100 potentially relevant information resources for further processing. The bot is capable of analyzing more than 200 thousand documents just in 3 to 5 hours.
Legislation and investments for digital medicine
Two panel discussions took place as part of М-Health Congress. Discussion titled "Telemedicine today: legislative aspects" featured the head of the direction "Regulation of new non-financial markets" of the Internet Initiatives Development Fund Alexandra Orekhovich, head of the state medical academy Scientific and Practical Center of Medical Radiology of the Moscow City Health Department Sergey Morozov. Speakers discussed which regulations should be adopted for the development of the telemedicine as far as businesses are adapting to new requirements, and came up with offerings intended to improve the situation in the industry for the regulator.
Among participants of the discussion dedicated to main trends in digital healthcare, one could find head of the Expert council for digital economy and blockchain technologies of the State Duma of the Russian Federation Artem Koltsov and head of the Health project at Mail.RU Group Evgeny Paperny. Key discussion points were investing in telemedicine, blockchain projects in healthcare, integration of the national industry with the global environment.
Alongside the congress, there was an exhibition area, where attendees learned about innovative medical technologies. Eleven companies presented their products including a mobile application for patients with joint disorders called NeFitnes, a system for online diagnostics of Alzheimer and Parkinson diseases EyeMove, a telemedicine service Mobile Doctor.
“Changing the attitude to health and turning to preventing strategies is our mutual task. I believe that such events facilitate active development of proper competitive environment which is the main driver of innovation growth,” social entrepreneur and founder of online service Moe Zdorovie (Russian for My Health) Eric Brovko said.
Organizer of the event Smile-Expo thanks everyone for participation. We are looking forward to meeting you in 2019 at the fifth М-Health Congress dedicated to mobile technologies in medicine.