Greg Freiherr, Industry Consultant
Greg Freiherr, Industry Consultant

Greg Freiherr has reported on developments in radiology since 1983. He runs the consulting service, The Freiherr Group.

Blog | Greg Freiherr, Industry Consultant | Artificial Intelligence | February 11, 2019

BLOG: How to Make Artificial Intelligence a Success in Medicine

Understand artificial intelligence (AI) and how its application can resolve your business challenges, advises AI executive Tushar Mehrotra. But don’t expect it to meet those challenges, if you don’t have the right talent onboard.

At the annual meeting of the Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society (HIMSS) this week in Orlando, Mehrotra will describe the kinds of talent that are critically important to the successful application of AI in health care and how organizations can get them. In a podcast published by Imaging Technology News, he explains how this talent might be acquired as well as the other steps needed to make AI a success in medical applications.

Mehrotra is senior vice president of analytics at Optum, which uses AI to improve patient experiences, as well as reduce health care costs. Other organizations can use AI in much the same way, Mehrotra explained in the podcast. Paramount to its successful use in healthcare, and particularly in medical imaging, is clearly understanding the issues that it can be leveraged to help resolve.

 

5 Steps to Successful AI

In the podcast, Mehrotra details five steps for the successful application of AI. The first is to develop a strategy for the use of AI. This entails working with the business and technology leadership of your institution to identify, and exactly characterize the issues, you want to resolve.

The second is to educate your organization’s business leaders about recent developments in AI. Separating fact from fiction — and convincing leaders that the fiction is just that — may not be as easy as it sounds. “You hear a lot of buzz … there are a lot of myths,” Mehrotra said in the podcast. But it is essential for leaders to understand clearly “what AI can and cannot do,” he said.

The third step comes after you have gotten the executive team onboard with the use of AI and have mapped out a strategy that describes how AI will be used. This step, Mehrotra said in the podcast, is the evaluation of AI technologies “so you have a sense of what to invest in.”

The fourth concerns getting the right talent for the job. This talent may be acquired by the hiring in-house staff. Or it might be acquired by partnering with other firms. Regardless of the route chosen, the talent must be integrated into your organization “so (it) is not working in a silo,” he said.

The fifth step is ensuring proper data curation. “This is going to be an incredibly important capability,” he said. Your organization must be able to aggregate, enrich and clean really, really large data sets from disparate data sources.” This last step relates directly to having the right talent onboard.

 

What Makes Medical Imaging a Prime Application Area

Medical imaging is “a pretty intense area for researchers and solution developers,” Mehrotra noted in the podcast. Some of the most substantial applications of AI in medical imaging have involved the interpretation of images. Exemplifying these, he said, are AI programs aimed at the interpretation of lung and liver lesions visualized by CT scans.

The reason is the extraordinary consumption of time that interpretation requires. Business use cases in medical imaging have a strong operational element, he noted. Consequently, a lot of attention is spent on “processes that take a lot of time.”

For those interested in using AI to resolve business use cases in health care, Mehrotra urges caution. The uninitiated must be careful not to “drown in the buzz,” he said in the podcast.

“Get an understanding of what artificial intelligence is,” he explained. “Understand what your specific business challenges are and how AI can be a vehicle to address those challenges.”

In the podcast, he advised prospective users of AI to be bold in their experimentation with AI. And to be sure to invest in talent:

“That will be a true differentiator for you and your business going forward.”

 

Greg Freiherr is a contributing editor for Imaging Technology News (ITN). Over the past three decades, Freiherr has served as business and technology editor for publications in medical imaging, as well as consulted for vendors, professional organizations, academia and financial institutions.

 

Editor's note: In preparation for the upcoming HIMSS (Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society) Conference on Feb. 11, contributing editor Greg Freiherr begins the show coverage with this exclusive podcast and accompanying blog. This is the final podcast in a series of three. You can listen to the first podcast, Hear and Now: How to Boost Cybersecurity in Medical Imaginghere. You can listen to the second podcast, Hear and Now: AI and Imaging, Your Data as Strategic Assethere.

 

Related content:

ITN’s Artificial Intelligence channel 

Technology Report: Artificial Intelligence

Increasing Presence of AI at RSNA Reflects Emphasis on Efficiency 

Imaging Smack Down at SIIM: AI Won’t Soon Replace Radiologists

Related Content

The paradox is that COVID-19 has manifested the critical need for exactly what the rules require: advancement of interoperability and digital online access to clinical data and imaging, at scale, for care coordination and infection control.

The paradox is that COVID-19 has manifested the critical need for exactly what the rules require: advancement of interoperability and digital online access to clinical data and imaging, at scale, for care coordination and infection control. Getty Images

Feature | Coronavirus (COVID-19) | May 28, 2020 | By Matthew A. Michela
One year after being proposed, federal rules to advance interoperability in healthcare and create easier access for p
The opportunity to converge the silos of data into a cross-functional analysis can provide immense value during the COVID-19 outbreak and in the future

Getty Images

Feature | Coronavirus (COVID-19) | May 28, 2020 | By Jeff Vachon
In the midst of the coronavirus pandemic normal
AI has the potential to help radiologists improve the efficiency and effectiveness of breast cancer imaging

Getty Images

Feature | Breast Imaging | May 28, 2020 | By January Lopez, M.D.
Headlines around the world the past several months declared that...
In April, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) cleared Intelerad’s InteleConnect EV solution for diagnostic image review on a range of mobile devices.
Feature | PACS | May 27, 2020 | By Melinda Taschetta-Millane
Fast, easily accessible patient images are crucial in this day and age, as imaging and medical records take on a new
An example of DiA'a automated ejection fraction AI software on the GE vScan POCUS system at RSNA 2019.

An example of DiA'a automated ejection fraction AI software on the GE vScan POCUS system at RSNA 2019. Photo by Dave Fornell.

News | Ultrasound Imaging | May 26, 2020
May 12, 2020 — DiA Imaging Analysis, a provider of AI based ultrasound analysis solutions, said it received a governm
 Recently the versatility of mixed and augmented reality products has come to the forefront of the news, with an Imperial led project at the Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust. Doctors have been wearing the Microsoft Hololens headsets whilst working on the front lines of the COVID pandemic, to aid them in their care for their patients. IDTechEx have previously researched this market area in its report “Augmented, Mixed and Virtual Reality 2020-2030: Forecasts, Markets and Technologies”, which predicts th

Doctors wearing the Hololens Device. Source: Imperial.ac.uk

News | Artificial Intelligence | May 22, 2020
May 22, 2020 — Recently the versatility of
In response to the significant healthcare delivery changes brought on by COVID-19, Varian has launched new capabilities for its Noona software application, a powerful tool designed to engage cancer patients in their care for continuous reporting and symptom monitoring.
News | Radiation Oncology | May 21, 2020
May 21, 2020 — In response to the significant healthcare delivery changes brought on by...
NucleusHealth, a provider of cloud-based medical image management technology and teleradiology services, announced today that it has received Conformité Européene (CE) Mark approval for Nucleus.io.
News | Teleradiology | May 21, 2020
May 21, 2020 — NucleusHealth, a provider of cloud-based medical image management technology and teleradiology service