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Beyond the hype, cognitive technology in healthcare

Expert.ai Team - 21 February 2017

The growth in big data for healthcare provides a real opportunity for improving the quality of diagnosis and treatment. However, unlocking the value of this information requires innovative solutions. Cognitive technology in healthcare is one such solution. By combining individual medical information with larger-scale statistics and scientific data, these applications allow doctors to identify targeted treatment by immediately accessing all of the available information about similar cases.

For doctors and medical professionals, research studies, patient medical records, demographic studies and medical literature are great resources for treatment and diagnosis—as long as it is easily and immediately accessible. Manual methods simply don’t cut it when it comes to the scale of information available, and human interpretation of this information can miss or overlook correlations in a patient’s symptoms or medical history.

Personalized Medicine: how cognitive technology in healthcare can improve it

Personalized Medicine is an approach based on individual medical information. According to Wikipedia, it is “a medical procedure that separates patients into different groups—with medical decisions, practices, interventions and/or products being tailored to the individual patient based on their predicted response or risk of disease”. New kinds of data and new information sources (for example wearable devices, digital medical records, doctor-patient chats, discussions on medical association websites, etc.) generate new and interesting information to empower Personalized Medicine.

The approach of cognitive technology in healthcare analyzes and understands all of the structured and unstructured information that is related to the patient’s condition. These applications understand words and sentences in the way that humans do. They allow systems to capture all of the useful information in a medical record or from health monitoring devices. This approach brings together a variety of information, from the number of daily steps tracked by a mobile app to lab results archived in the hospital, dietary habits and data recording previous past surgery or procedures described in the digital medical record. And it allows doctors to see the connections between diverse and complex information types.

Access to this information through cognitive technologies helps improve the clinical decision process and allows doctors to compare similar cases and suggest the best treatment, drug therapy and, proper dosage, etc. for each patient.

Cognitive technology in healthcare offers a range of benefits that support a Personalized Medicine approach:
Improves communication between doctor and patient, especially through digital channels
Efficiently manages content by extracting important medical knowledge from
from different sources (clinical trial reports, medical websites, etc.)
Integrates structured data with unstructured information about patients, treatments, drugs, etc.
Provides access to relevant information about new trends, clinical risks and innovations in healthcare
– Last but not least, it combines scientific data with personalized medical information to make it accessible and available for medical consultation

Download our white paper “Empowering Personalized Medicine with Semantic Technology” to learn more