Louisville to become a hub for AI in healthcare with Microsoft support

Microsoft is launching a regional hub for AI, Internet of Things and data science in Louisville, Kentucky, according to Mayor Greg Fischer, with a focus on collaborating with partners in healthcare and manufacturing.

The partnership with Microsoft is called the AI Innovation Digital Alliance and aims to help vulnerable industries reskill and upskill their workforce as AI and other technologies continue to come into play. Both these industries face the risk of automation with the emergence of AI technology and city government will work with education, workforce and business partners to strengthen them both healthcare and manufacturing.

The rise of AI in healthcare has come with some fear in the industry that technology will replace the need for healthcare professionals. In fact, radiology students are more worried about AI in recent years, according to a recent survey.

Microsoft’s role in the alliance will be to fund an AI, IoT and data science fellowship program with training and equipment, along with a physical location downtown, other grants and resources for local entrepreneurs, partnerships with higher education providers, and supporting AI-assisted applied research for community solutions, including racial disparities in environmental effects on human health.

“Artificial intelligence is the next frontier in technology, and through this collaboration with Microsoft, we will prepare our workforce for the tech revolution and create economic opportunity, while not losing sight of the need for equity within economic growth,” Fischer said in a statement. “We are excited to partner with Microsoft to ensure Louisville residents and businesses are ready for the future economy.”

In addition, Microsoft, Louisville Metro and the Brookings Institute will collaborate on a local strategy on the impacts of AI, IoT and data science technologies on communities and develop a playbook that educates other communities on the changing economic landscape.

Louisville plans to host a summit in 2020, along with six other events supported by Microsoft, centered on the three area of focus. The city is home to several major healthcare conglomerates, including health insurance giant Humana, Kindred Healthcare, and Norton Healthcare.