5 February 2023

Why not AI in Malaysian healthcare?

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By: Dr. Nahrizul Adib Kadri

The potential use of AI in Malaysian healthcare is vast and promising. With the right implementation and execution, AI could greatly improve the efficiency and accuracy of medical diagnosis and treatment, ultimately leading to better health outcomes for patients.

One potential use of AI in Malaysian healthcare is in the realm of medical imaging. Currently, medical imaging, such as X-rays and MRIs, plays a crucial role in the diagnosis and treatment of many medical conditions. However, the interpretation of these images can be highly subjective and prone to human error. AI, on the other hand, has the ability to analyze medical images with a high degree of accuracy and consistency.

For example, a study conducted by researchers at the University of California, San Francisco found that a deep learning algorithm was able to detect lung cancer with a level of accuracy comparable to that of trained radiologists. This kind of technology has the potential to greatly improve the accuracy of medical imaging and ultimately lead to more effective treatment for patients.

yellow monitor
AI powers can be harvested in both diagnosis and treatment stages, even predicting future pandemics. Photo from Unsplash

Another potential use of AI in Malaysian healthcare is in the area of disease prediction and prevention. AI algorithms have the ability to analyze large amounts of data, such as patient medical records and demographic information, to identify patterns and predict the likelihood of an individual developing a particular disease. This kind of technology could be used to identify at-risk individuals and implement preventative measures, ultimately leading to better health outcomes for patients.

For example, a study conducted by researchers at the University of Michigan found that an AI algorithm was able to predict the likelihood of heart disease with an accuracy of 82%, outperforming traditional risk prediction methods. This kind of technology has the potential to greatly improve the efficiency and effectiveness of disease prevention efforts in Malaysia.

Additionally, AI has the potential to improve the efficiency of medical care by automating routine tasks and enabling doctors to focus on more complex and critical aspects of care. For instance, AI algorithms could be used to automatically analyze patient medical records and identify potential health concerns, freeing up doctors to focus on providing more personalized and effective treatment.

One example of this is the use of AI-powered virtual assistants in hospitals. These assistants are able to handle routine tasks, such as scheduling appointments and answering patients’ questions, allowing doctors to focus on providing high-quality medical care.

In conclusion, the potential use of AI in Malaysian healthcare is vast and promising. From improving the accuracy of medical imaging to predicting and preventing disease, AI has the potential to greatly enhance the efficiency and effectiveness of medical care in Malaysia. With the right implementation and execution, AI could greatly improve the health outcomes for patients and ultimately benefit the entire healthcare system.

So yes, the answer is why not AI in Malaysian healthcare?

The author is an Associate Professor at the Department of Biomedical Engineering, Universiti Malaya, and may be reached at nahrizuladib@um.edu.my