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Medical experts note technology adoption brings in new paradigm shift in healthcare practice

Nandita Vijay, Bengaluru
Monday, March 13, 2023, 08:00 Hrs  [IST]

Technology adoptions like artificial intelligence and machine learning are bringing in major transformation in the way a primary physician will extend treatment protocols. Technology helps to better under the complex symptoms, stated medical experts.

Some of the medical advances with the technology are genomics and epigenetics, Big Data, AI and ML which are allowing molecular markers, and digital phenotyping to better under the symptoms and syndromes, they added.

Noting that AI will fundamentally transform medicine in its diagnostics and patient care, Dr Paul Salins, managing director, Narayana Hrudayalaya Multispecialty Hospital and Mazumdar-Shaw Medical Foundation, said that technology engages the doctor in two ways. One is the supportive care extended to patient and the other is to reduce the doctor’s human cognitive load.

From a patient perspective, AI gives attention to genomics and epigenetics. The former is the study of information encoded within the full DNA sequence. The latter focuses on how DNA is organised and regulated in the cell, Dr Salins said at the Happiest Health flagship summit: Future of Medicine 2023 organised to highlight the emerging trends in healthcare, innovative offerings and the future of medicine.

Genomics and epigenetics bring in robustness to the structured make-up of the human body. It indicates the time dependent wear and tear durability. Therefore genomic + Big Data provides patterns of the body condition with AI. These are new emerging areas which are seen to be dominant mechanisms for understanding how the body system functions, said Dr Salins.

Technology has made healthcare more accurate by providing medical professionals with new ways to diagnose and treat patients. Diagnostic tools like MRIs and CT scans have helped doctors diagnose illnesses with more accuracy than ever before.

Going forward, we see AI and ML directed for patient improvement. Data informatics will provide a better understanding of the disease. It can provide a mechanism for patients to provide their clinicians with critical information to ensure the scope for better care, Dr Salins said while speaking on the topic ‘How technology is shaping the future of medicine.’

The big development on the healthcare landscape is the use of wearable devices which will gather the data of health and transmit it in real-time for faster treatment access. Wearables are designed for chronic condition monitoring.

The use of technology also allows surveillance. These cover molecular markers where with AI and ML will see the physician understanding the disease.  Besides digital phenotyping helps precision mapping which leads to better diagnosis. We view all these as the paradigm shift in medicine. It will enhance patient empowered empathy, note progression of ageing and disease spread. All these transformations with technology which will lead to high value patient engagement and give the doctors time for themselves as diagnostics will be faster providing clarity on the disease progression, said Dr Salins. 
Prof. Sanjeev Jain, principal investigator, SKAN projects, NIMHANS said that artificial intelligence will be the real intelligence. To this end, technology has a given a better understanding to mental disorders. In face mental disorders and diseases are the highest prevalent medical conditions globally and contributing to 40 per cent of spend in healthcare.

Stating that mental disorders are complex because of brain diseases are multifactorial because of diverse biological systems, Prof Jain said without computing technology, it is impossible to understand these conditions.


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