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The Rise of the Superclinician: How Voice AI Can Improve the Healthcare Experience

The Rise of the Superclinician: How Voice AI Can Improve the Healthcare Experience

The healthcare industry is currently undergoing a major transformation. High burnout rates among physicians, a rapidly ageing global population, and the growing need for personalised care are just a few of the challenges facing the sector today. However, amidst these challenges, technology – specifically artificial intelligence – has emerged as a practical, highly accessible solution. One of these interfaces that’s promising a paradigm shift in healthcare is Voice AI.

AI, Thought Leadership
Member News

Rustom Lawyer, Co-Founder & CEO, Augnito

The healthcare industry is currently undergoing a major transformation. High burnout rates among physicians, a rapidly ageing global population, and the growing need for personalised care are just a few of the challenges facing the sector today. However, amidst these challenges, technology – specifically artificial intelligence – has emerged as a practical, highly accessible solution. One of these interfaces that’s promising a paradigm shift in healthcare is Voice AI.

Voice AI, or Voice-enabled Artificial Intelligence, harnesses the power of machine learning to understand and interpret human speech. By combining technologies such as Automatic Speech Recognition (ASR) and Natural Language Processing (NLP), Voice AI can accurately transcribe spoken language into written text, interpret the meaning, and even execute tasks based on voice commands.

This technology has garnered a significant amount of attention in the healthcare sector due to its potential to streamline workflows, reduce administrative burdens, and ultimately improve patient care.

 

The Current State of the Industry

Before delving into the benefits of Voice AI, it’s important to fully understand the challenges currently plaguing the healthcare industry. One of the most significant issues is the high burnout rate among physicians, largely due to the enormous administrative burden they face.

According to recent global surveys, healthcare professionals spend an equal amount of time on administrative tasks as they do on patient care. This has led to increased stress levels among clinicians and has taken a toll on their mental health, leading to an unusually high attrition rate. So, this is a crisis that is not only affecting clinicians but is also having a negative impact on patient care and healing outcomes.

Think of every patient interaction as a crucial exchange of information that necessitates meticulous documentation to ensure comprehensive and accurate record keeping. Clinicians have a multitude of documentation requirements. Prominent examples are the SOAP (Subjective, Objective, Assessment, and Plan) note, progress notes, discharge summaries, and many more. These facilitate effective communication among healthcare providers within the ecosystem, contributing to continuity of care, patient safety, and the overall quality of healthcare delivery.

 

How Voice AI Has Helped

Given these primary challenges, the potential of Voice AI in healthcare is immense. In its current avatars, Voice AI can automate many of the administrative tasks that currently contribute to clinician burnout, thereby allowing healthcare professionals to focus more on patient care. After all, voice is our most intuitive and efficient form of communication.

 

Automating Administrative Tasks

One of the main ways Voice AI can alleviate the administrative burden on clinicians is through automating the process of clinical documentation. Traditionally, clinicians have had to manually document patient information, a task that is both time-consuming and prone to errors.

With Voice AI, clinicians can simply dictate their observations, diagnoses, and treatment plans, and the technology will accurately transcribe this into written text. This not only saves time but also ensures that patient records are accurate and up to date.

 

Improving Patient Care

By reducing the administrative burden on clinicians, Voice AI allows healthcare professionals to spend more time with their patients. This face-to-face interaction is crucial for comprehensive patient care.

Moreover, Voice AI can also provide clinicians with quick and easy access to patient records. This means that healthcare professionals can make more informed decisions, leading to better patient outcomes.

 

Doubling Clinician Productivity 

Voice AI also has the potential to significantly enhance efficiency within the healthcare sector. By automating tasks such as clinical documentation, Voice AI can help healthcare organisations reduce overheads and increase productivity.

Furthermore, the technology can also assist in diagnosing diseases and recommending treatments, leading to faster and more accurate patient care.

One example of successful Voice AI implementation is the integration of Augnito within Apollo Hospitals. Within just six months of deployment, the healthcare provider achieved a return on investment 21 times over, saved an average of 44 hours per month for providers, and noted a 46% increase in overall productivity.

 

The Emergence of the “Superclinician”

The adoption of Voice AI in healthcare is leading to the empowerment of a new breed of healthcare professionals – the “superclinicians”. These individuals, aided by AI copilots, now have access to technology that can summarise the patient’s past records before they arrive for the appointment, generate structured clinical documentation from unstructured doctor-patient conversations, generate a set plan of care for certain types of diagnoses, as well as accurately assign clinical codes for insurance purposes, among several other benefits. They are therefore able to streamline their daily operations, provide more effective and nuanced patient care, and also achieve a better work-life balance. Superclinicians can essentially leverage intuitive voice workflow capabilities to ensure that their focus remains solely on their primary objective – providing high-quality patient care.

It’s also interesting to note that the publicly available technology is still in its early stages and there is much potential for future development. Emerging trends such as improved Natural Language Processing capabilities, greater interoperability with existing hospital information systems, and increasing rates of adoption by healthcare providers suggest that the impact of Voice AI on healthcare is only set to grow. Furthermore, innovative applications – such as the use of voice biomarkers for early detection of diseases – hint at the exciting possibilities this technology holds.

Leveraging over 2500 biomarkers that are present in the sub-language elements of the human voice alone—we will soon be able to identify neurological ailments such as Alzheimer’s, mental health diseases such as Depression, and pulmonary diseases such as Covid 19, just by hearing a patient speak! These biomarkers essentially work as a diagnostic tool for the AI—scanning for voice patterns in the speech that will help in the detection of disease via a database of linguistic intonations, inflections, cadence, and more.

 

Looking Ahead, With Optimism

While there are still challenges and ethical considerations to navigate, the future of Voice AI in healthcare looks promising. As the technology continues to evolve, it is poised to revolutionise healthcare as we know it, creating a more efficient, effective, and patient-centred healthcare system.

There are still several aspects of healthcare that are yet to benefit from Voice AI adoption. These include Mental Health, Public Health surveillance, remote patient monitoring (integration with healthcare wearables), personalized medicine, rare disease diagnosis, health equity, new drug discovery & development, and lots more. It’s important to remember however, that AI should always be used in conjunction with human expertise and oversight in critical healthcare situations. Things like regulatory approval, clinical validation, ethical & legal compliance should remain at the forefront of discourse on the subject as well.

This transformation is still in its early stages, but the potential impact of Voice AI on healthcare is both immense and exciting. The rise of the superclinician is not just a possibility, but an imminent reality.

Discover more about Augnito:

 

Augnito is an intuitive and advanced Voice-AI solution innovator, revolutionizing clinical documentation in the global healthcare market. Their proprietary AI-based clinical speech recognition, natural language understanding (NLU) & generative AI technologies enable ergonomic data entry with 99% accuracy, anywhere, from any device. Augnito helps streamline clinical workflows, makes healthcare intelligence securely accessible, and ensures that physicians have more time to concentrate on their primary concern: patient care. Their solutions are currently in use at more than 375 hospitals, across more than 25 countries.

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