Three-quarters of health professionals project widespread AI adoption: survey

The survey from Berkeley Research Group comes as the federal government mulls how to best regulate artificial intelligence in healthcare.

Article By: Sydney Halleman

Blog Source From : https://www.healthcaredive.com/

Dive Brief:

  • Three-quarters of healthcare providers and pharmaceutical professionals think artificial intelligence-related technologies will be “widespread” in the next three years, according to a new survey from consultancy Berkeley Research Group.
  • However, only about 40% of surveyed professionals said their organizations reviewed or planned to review AI regulatory guidance.
  • Surveyed providers were more optimistic than pharmaceutical professionals that regulation could provide necessary guardrails for AI use in healthcare. Industry stakeholders have raised concerns that a too-rapid adoption of AI could pose risks to data privacy and exacerbate health inequities.

Dive Insight:

Generative AI has been a target of healthcare investment as companies say the technology, which can generate content like text and images, has the potential to improve diagnostic screenings and decrease the administrative load on clinicians.

AI investment has held steady even as other health markets contracted last year. The market size of healthcare AI is projected to balloon from $28 billion in 2024 to over $180 billion in 2030.

Concerns surrounding the technology have also mounted, prompting the federal government to mull how to best regulate AI in healthcare.

“It is very clear that not enough is being done to protect patients from bias in AI,” Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore, said during a Senate finance committee meeting this month. “[…] Congress now has an obligation to ensure the good outcomes from AI set the rules of the road for new innovations in American healthcare.”

Three-quarters of provider respondents surveyed by BRG said they felt “confident” that future regulation and guidance could impose guardrails on AI. Over 80% of providers also said they felt confident in their organizations could comply with potential regulations and said that accuracy, safety, data privacy and HIPAA violations were top concerns. In contrast, 56% of pharmaceutical professionals had confidence in AI regulation.

Surveyed professionals were especially concerned with regulations regarding data privacy, with over 50% of provider respondents saying cybersecurity and data management were their chief concern.

Data privacy and cybersecurity concerns have abounded as the amount of healthcare breaches rise. The federal government is eyeing cybersecurity guidelines for the sector and the Federal Trade Commission levied fines last year against GoodRx and BetterHelp for inappropriately disclosing personal health information.

Still, more than four in ten provider respondents said AI has already been widely accepted and implemented in their organizations, according to the survey. Providers said AI use in diagnostics and imaging, preventative screenings, health predictions and patient safety would significant impact the industry. Administrative tasks, including revenue cycle management and supply chain management, could also be positively impacted.

The survey polled 150 provider and pharmaceutical professionals.

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