Artificial intelligence with IBM Watson, robotics pondered on 60 Minutes

[grow_thumb image=”http://telecareaware.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/06/robottoy-1.jpg” thumb_width=”150″ /]This Sunday, the long-running TV magazine show 60 Minutes (CBS) had a long Charlie Rose-led segment on artificial intelligence. It concentrated mainly on the good with a little bit of ugly thrown in. The longest part of it was on IBM Watson massively crunching and applying oncology and genomics to diagnosis. In a study of 1,000 cancer patients reviewed by the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill’s molecular tumor board, while 99 percent of the doctor diagnoses were confirmed by Watson as accurate, Watson found ‘something new’ in 30 percent. As a tool, it is still considered to be in adolescence. Watson and data analytics technology has been a $15 billion investment for IBM, which can afford it, but by licensing it and through various partnerships, IBM has been starting to recoup it. The ‘children of Watson’ are also starting to grow. Over at Carnegie Mellon, robotics is king and Google Glass is reading visual data to give clues on speeding up reaction time. At Imperial College, Maja Pantic is taking the early steps into artificial emotional intelligence with a huge database of facial expressions and interpretations. In Hong Kong, Hanson Robotics is developing humanoid robots, and that may be part of the ‘ugly’ along with the fears that AI may outsmart humans in the not-so-distant future. 60 Minutes video and transcript

Speaking of recouping, IBM Watson Health‘s latest partnership is with Siemens Healthineers to develop population health technology and services to help providers operate in value-based care. Neil Versel at MedCityNews looks at that as well as 60 Minutes. Added bonus: a few chuckles about the rebranded Siemens Healthcare’s Disney-lite rebranding.

Ten years on from the WSD: is the future brighter for telehealth? Can wind farms help?

As Prof Mike Short pointed out recently, 2016 is the tenth anniversary of the start of the Whole System Demonstrator (WSD) programme that in retrospect, because of poor trial design, probably slowed the uptake of digital health in the UK more than any other single action. It seems appropriate therefore to look at how telehealth* has fared over that period, and perhaps even more importantly, is poised for the next ten years.

The mistakes of the WSD are well documented (eg here, here & here) – suffice it to say that it proved beyond all reasonable doubt, at least to this editor, that unlike medicine-based interventions, which seem less sensitive to their care pathway, digital health delivers most of its benefit through enabling a different, patient-centred care delivery, so every digital health intervention needs to be evaluated holistically, and in its own care pathway. Sadly over the ten years, much of the academic work looking at the benefits of telehealth has continued to evaluate the technology in the time-honoured way that medicines have been evaluated, with predictably largely equivocal results.

Those of us who have delivered telehealth projects though have a sense of disconnect as, time and again, a focused implementation – not a pilot – in which the staff delivering the service understand that it will be a permanent change for which they need radically to change the way they deliver care, yields huge returns on investments through savings typically in the 50-90% region. (more…)

Weekend must read: The Death of Patient Zero

[grow_thumb image=”http://telecareaware.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/07/landscape-1438023958-esq080115stephanielee001-hope.jpg” thumb_width=”150″ /]The story of one woman with advanced cancer–Stephanie Lee–as doctors and researchers at Mount Sinai NYC race to save her with genomics-driven personalized medicine. We see its limitations, along with the limitations of conventional medicine and the problems of the stateside military medical system–Mrs Lee’s husband was killed in combat in Iraq in 2005. What was unlimited was the courage of her family, her friends and her medical advocates, especially one of those Mount Sinai genomicists, Eric Schadt, an “evangelical Christian turned mathematician turned biologist turned genomicist who had become one of the evangelical forces behind the “Big Data” revolution” and Dr Dennis Charney, the head of Mount Sinai’s Icahn School of Medicine who has made a home for gene sequencing research there. Tom Junod writes about Patient Zero in Esquire –including why she was given that name.  Photo–Esquire

Gamification in the US; any great examples closer to home?

In spite of gamification being at the peak of inflated expectations in the 2013 Gartner Hype Cycle, here’s a great example from the US journal Pediatrics of its use to encourage young people with cancer to improve their medication adherence.  The subject was also covered in the BBC’s Click (starts 13.55 into the programme), and the Hope Labs website is here

…which prompts the question as to where the best examples of gamification use to improve health & wellbeing are on this side of the Atlantic. (more…)