AI is everywhere: Students debate the use of AI in healthcare


The idea of artificial intelligence (AI) in the medical field may turn some heads and leave a sour taste in some mouths, even though the potential benefits of this technology might bring some newfound advancements. While the present-day benefits may not outweigh the negatives yet, improvements to the technology could potentially be life-saving.

AI can be used to keep track of medication and prescriptions. Users can use AI to predict when they will need a refill, how many doses they have remaining and even request prescriptions to be refilled. This can be helpful to patients with multiple prescriptions or patients given a large number of doses meant to last months. With these features, it can prevent patients from taking too much medication or potentially prevent substance misuse. 

AI can also be used in an analytical way. It can monitor behaviors, symptoms and more while helping doctors find correlation in what’s happening and can lead to faster and more accurate diagnoses. This is especially essential for patients with chronic or ever-changing symptoms that require intense monitoring but may not have a diagnosis yet. Not only that but patients will know if their symptoms are concerning, and whether or not they should see a doctor for further examination. This could prevent patients from going to the doctor unnecessarily and encourage those to go to the doctor who may have otherwise avoided it.

When viewing environmental factors, lifestyle and family history, AI can predict the risk factor for certain diseases based on this information. Some of these include cancer, heart disease and more. Even though some may already know some of this information due to family history, environmental factors may cause other diseases that patients may not be aware of. Preventative measures in healthcare are extremely important in the medical field because it can help patients avoid other problems in the future.

While AI can be concerning if left unchecked, using AI in combination with a medical professional can prove to be a positive experience. Thanks to technology, modern medicine might be propelled into greater heights of saving people.



Artificial intelligence (AI) has rapidly expanded across almost every aspect of daily life. Sometimes, this is a positive thing and can be used for immense good. When it comes to healthcare, however, it’s in the best interest of doctors and patients alike to keep AI outside of the medical world. 

AI is making its way into the healthcare world through the development of drugs, aiding in patient-doctor communication and transcription of medical documents. AI has also been used for patient diagnoses and formatting treatment plans. Although this sounds as though the role of AI within healthcare can be nothing but helpful for everyone, that is not always the case. 

Polling indicates that a majority of patients are wary of the increased presence of AI in healthcare. More than half of those surveyed admitted that they would feel far less comfortable if their doctors were relying on AI for their patient care. Few patients believe that AI will improve healthcare experiences. Doctors have also expressed concerns with how knowledgeable developers of these technologies are and asked that they be consulted before it is implemented in their practices. 

There are also concerns about the data, or lack thereof, that is being used to develop the AI tools for medical purposes. Concerns lay, especially, in the lack of data and research on racial and gender-based minority groups and how that may affect the usefulness of the tools. Considering the shocking lack of research and data on women and minorities within medicine, questions are raised on if this will negatively impact the ability of AI to adequately treat all patients. 

Another major concern is the privacy and safety of patients when AI is involved. Because of the basic functioning of AI, the technology is programmed to memorize the data that it is given. AI tools, like those being used for medicinal research, are also most often owned by private companies for funding and sales purposes. This causes inherent risks for the data breaches and for patients’ data to be sold or used without their knowledge or consent. 

AI is, by nature, incredibly versatile and can be used for good in so many different ways. As it relates to healthcare, however, patient safety and comfort when they are seeking medical treatment is paramount, both of which are endangered by the increased role of AI in the field of medicine. The focus of medical research today should be to ensure positive patient outcomes across the board, not introducing AI.


Featured photo courtesy of Karolina Grabowska, Pexels