Harvard: AI may help solve healthcare's red-tape problem

Artificial intelligence may help stop the “downward spiral in productivity” in the healthcare system that has been plagued by labor-intensive, inefficient administrative tasks, according to an article in the Harvard Business Review.

AI tools capable of processing vast amounts of data and making real-time recommendations could greatly reduce the administrative burdens in the healthcare system––and save money to boot. According to the article, about one-third of the $3 trillion annual costs of the U.S. healthcare system are administrative and operational inefficiencies.

Unlike the “Herculean effort” of adopting electronic health records, adopting AI is different.

“Where EHRs required billions of dollars in investment and multi-year commitments from health systems, AI is more about targeted solutions,” wrote Minoo Javanmardian, PhD, partner of health and life sciences at Oliver Wyman Health; and Aditya Lingampally, principal of health and life sciences at Oliver Wyman Health. “It involves productivity improvements made in increments by individual organizations without the prerequisite collaboration and standardization across health care players required with EHR adoption.”

Specifically, AI is enabling:

  • Faster hospital bed assignments
  • Easier and improved documentation
  • Automated fraud detection

As AI continues to be adopted into the healthcare space, providers can expect more capabilities to ease inefficiencies, improve care and reduce costs.

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