Artificial intelligence and health, a booming market

Artificial intelligence (AI) is being implemented in healthcare by using algorithms and software for the study of medical information to help in the early detection or even prediction of diseases and thereby provide appropriate medication, ultimately reducing spending in health.

The AI market in the health field is booming, supported by Silicon Valley giants and emerging companies. The market has been estimated to reach USD6.6 billion by 2021. The market is anticipated to have a double digit accelerated growth of 62.2% between 2016-2022.

The data collection is mainly via smartphones and other connected objects that the companies are developing. Companies like Cardiogram are creating applications that can detect arrhythmias in users of smart watches. The company uses the clock’s sensors and an algorithm to distinguish a normal heart rate from an atrial fibrillation which can lead to a heart attack. University of Harvard and university of Vermont created to tool to identify cases of depression by analyzing the photos published on the Instagram network. Google (Alphabet), is developing its departments’ DeepMind using AI to help doctors assess the risks of cancer spread and develop appropriate radiotherapy treatments.

Other big companies involved in developing AI tools are IBM, Medtronic, Microsoft, Apple, Amazon, Sentrian, Healthsense Inc, Propeller Health, Buoy Health, etc. Most new startups use machine learning and predictive analytics. Currently, North America leads the AI healthcare market, followed by Europe. India and China in the Asia Pacific region have the highest potential for growth.

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