The concept of artificial intelligence, or AI, has moved from the stuff of science fiction to everyday application with remarkable speed. Consumer-oriented applications have led the way, and many industries have been quick to adapt AI to their operations in order to maximize efficiency and spur growth.
Healthcare, which can sometimes lag behind the curve when it comes to implementing new technology, has been quick to see the value of AI as well. Providers have grasped that Artificial Intelligence can allow them to use the copious data sets they collect to create actionable insights. And in so doing they are able to advance many operational goals while also increasing the quality and efficiency of patient care and satisfaction.
While AI’s capabilities are seemingly endless, here are some concrete ways it is already making a difference in healthcare when it comes to setting and achieving operational goals:
AI is allowing clinicians to utilize a “big data” model to take volumes of information and quickly distill them into treatment plans that can be more predictive around patient needs and outcomes. On the staffing side, AI can also use staffing patterns and trends to optimize workflows. AI programs, such as HealthStream’s Jane™, also can provide valuable insights and support around such vital staffing concerns as nurse onboarding, training, and continuing operations.
AI also allows healthcare providers to go beyond the four walls of their facilities and be more aggressive in community outreach and support. When they can have information on illness vectors and other trends, they can move to take preventive action. That can be anything from public-relations outreach around seasonal issues such as flu vaccines to more urgent issues, such as health and wellness information in the face of a rapidly moving concern, such as the COVID-19 pandemic. AI allows for a more targeted approach to outreach, so resources aren’t wasted on providing information or services that don’t have value for the community or the provider.
When information is being analyzed from a broad perspective, rather than utilized in silos, it can do more to achieve enterprise-wide goals. That’s a huge plus with AI; it can drill down, or pull back, what it’s doing in terms of data analysis to meet specific needs. That means if there’s an issue around clinical support in one area of a facility or enterprise, the data can be explored to see what solutions would solve the problem. If it’s a larger issue, such as an outbreak of a specific illness, AI can present data around the groups affected, and then the provider can ramp up specific care models and staff to handle the expected rise in patients.
More people than ever before have access to their healthcare records through patient portals. They also have apps literally at their fingertips to study their own health information, from calorie counters to heartrate monitors. That’s AI at work in the consumer sector. Consumers don’t understand why their healthcare provider isn’t similarly “plugged in,” and so the onus is on providers to keep up. The good news is, AI is being rapidly deployed all across healthcare, allowing provides to meet patients where they are on the technological front while also solving their most pressing needs around care, operational efficiency and planning for future growth.
HealthStream’s Jane™ is the World’s First Digital Mentor for Nurses. Jane harnesses the power of artificial intelligence (AI) to create a system that personalizes competency development at scale, quickly identifies risk and opportunity, and improves quality outcomes by focusing on critical thinking. Leveraging decades of research and with over 4 million assessments completed, Jane was designed to power lifelong, professional growth of clinical professionals. Jane is part of HealthStream’s Clinical Development Solution for Nurses.
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