Brit plan to spend millions on AI in healthcare draws detractors

Last week the U.K. government announced plans to pour £250 million (around $301.5 million) into a fledgling AI lab run by the National Health Service (NHS). The work is to focus on advancing medical science in various arenas, including cancer care and dementia. This week the skeptics started weighing in.

The Register, the cheeky tech outlet that has offices in London, San Francisco and Sydney, has posted a roundup of criticisms.

“This is a huge amount of money, and there are a lot more deserving things NHS needs,” says a general practitioner.  

“[S]ince it was AI, it got a prominent slot on the grid,” adds a patient-privacy advocate. “There are no details yet—just a mountain of questions that no one is able to answer, as no one has done any of the thinking.”

Unsurprisingly, there’s already pushback to the pushback.

In the article’s comments section, an anonymous opinion-holder says the project seems worth a go.

“Sometimes you just have to take a gamble to see if something works,” says the commenter. “£250M is loose change compared to the overall NHS budget and an absolute bargain if it improves cancer diagnosis and treatment.”

Read the whole thing: