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How Tech can Create Better Learning Health Systems

1 March, 2017 | Article Source: Rob LaPointe  |   (No Comments) | 22,419 Views

New advancements in tech, such as Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning, have revolutionized everything from cars to marketing. If there is one thing that is an undeniable truth in this world, it’s that everything generates data. This isn’t a new concept; since the beginning of time people have used observation to create better ways of living: where prey is and isn’t, what grows when, even what burns hotter.


In the intervening millennia since Homo habilis first realized a rock was more effective than it’s hand, the data hasn’t changed at all. Oak still burns in basically the same way it’s burned since time began. What has changed is our ability to percept and report upon data being generated. We don’t just know how oak burns differently than pine, but we can figure out how much hotter it burns, what chemicals are being produced, even how long each fuel lasts.


Today, AI allows us to study data down to minutia. We can test every change, compare millions of sets of variables, and see how each change impacts the our system. We see this happening with Home AI Software Systems like Alexa and Google Home: these Home AIs become better at predicting what we want, but only after being exposed to our typical habits.


So when we have all this data and now have the capability to understand it more thoroughly, why have we not applied this to HealthCare? Healthcare is one of the most important issues in the world – and not just because we’re in a bit of a transitory period as we await word from the Trump Administration.


Healthcare bisects all aspects of life. Everything we do impacts our health. Every decision, every choice, changes our bodies – for better or worse. In other words, this is all data we can collect and analyze.


To some degree, this is something we’ve known for a long time. This knowledge has resulted in the rise of what the healthcare industry calls Learning Health Systems (LHS). A recent article in TechCrunch pointed out that there are currently efforts to revamp the extant LHS infrastructure. As the author points out though, these efforts largely attempt to work within existing systems and don’t take advantage of our ability to analyze the world around us.


So let’s dive deeper into how the Cloud, AI and Machine learning can help revolutionize Healthcare through Learning Health Systems.


“Collective Intelligence” and The Cloud


In the years since they hit the streets, Google’s autonomous cars have gathered over 300 years worth of driving experience. The couple million miles they’ve driven, they’ve collected more data than a human could – in several lifetimes. This is done because they act together: when one vehicle is exposed to a new scenario, they all are.


This can be easily applied to a global LHS network, creating systems that are continually improving upon ways to deliver improved care. This is especially useful when it comes to health, because every human body responds differently to different stimuli. Research and treatment that was once geographically isolated can now be shared around the world – in real time.


Through the Cloud, Healthcare providers can create sharing systems that build instantly off one another’s work. Not only that, but Cloud systems can turn standard delivery into a global experiment. A provider in Los Angeles can only pull information from a small pool of diabetics, generally not enough for a verifiable experiment. But the dozens of diabetic patients receiving daily care in LA can be combined with data from a hospital in London, or Mumbai.


Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning


The power behind AI is not it’s ability to collect and analyze data. Any old computer can do that to some degree of effectiveness. AI takes it a step further: it takes all that data – and then predicts what might happen next. It helps people input different steps, to see how each step might impact the end result.


In Healthcare, AI can help providers determine more effective – and cheaper – ways of delivering healthcare. It can see how a change might impact the system overall. When combined with Machine Learning, AI can determine how to run a better healthcare system. After all, one of the biggest issues in healthcare is the cost: even Obamacare (the ACA) can be expensive for those who don’t qualify for subsidies.


Modern Tech can change this. It can point the way to lower costs without lower the quality of service. More than that, the Cloud and a global LHS Network can analyze how different providers operate. This is important because it means that clinics won’t have to experiment constantly with alternative ways of providing care: it’s already been done by someone, somewhere.


Change Healthcare Now


“We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.”


To anyone born in the United States, this phrase is pretty much second nature. These inalienable rights are not achievable without the an underlying level of basic health. One of the biggest obstacles to a universal health care system is the expense. Most nations want to see their citizenry healthy, but if a government cannot fund itself, then it collapses.


LHS networks, combined with AI, the Cloud, and other new technologies can point the way to delivering more significantly cheaper services for all people. But someone has to take the first step. Someone has to step up the plate and show the world that this can be done. How do you do it? Contact an expert development team with the skills to make it happen.


So how about it? Want to save the world and get rich while doing it? Give us a call at 408.805.0495/408.621.8481 – or click to contact us!


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