In China, healthcare has become one of the largest applications for artificial intelligence (AI). Companies from start-ups to tech giants are seizing the opportunity to apply AI solutions.
A rapidly aging population is putting a lot of stress on China's healthcare system. The Chinese government has been looking to technology to solve the problem. One of the areas it sees real potential and room for growth is AI, with most of China's AI healthcare companies currently focused on medical imaging systems.
Hsiao-wuen Hon, the managing director of Microsoft Research Asia, said, "As we know, the computer vision is a big part of AI. And in healthcare, looking of the image whether it is the X-ray or MRI, we need to get a special doctor spending lots of time to look at the image. Computer vision can provide a lot of help. It's not really trying to replace the doctor, but really make doctor productive. You have already a lot of applications going on in the medical imaging."
As AI becomes increasingly sophisticated and is integrated more with healthcare, training becomes increasingly important. Special multi-form platforms are being built to meet this end, for both full-time and reserve personnel. Experts say this will provide more adequate support for scientific and industrial development.
"Workers also need to upgrade their knowledge in AI. We also will use this platform to provide the training certification to make sure the existing workers are well educated and can process necessary knowledge in AI," stressed Hon.
Chinese President Xi Jinping has highlighted the need for technological innovation many times in the past, underscoring AI in particular. Experts say while advancements in the industry could alleviate China's personnel shortage, its diagnostic accuracy still needs improvement.