Machine learning is an artificial intelligence (AI) technology that allows machines to learn by using algorithms to interpret data from connected things to predict outcomes and learn from successes and failures. AI can significantly transform how healthcare systems operate, connect with patients, and provide care. AI is the next step following the implementation of sophisticated big data & analytics (BDA) approaches, and can unlock large volumes of data if it can be accessed in an automated way in real time without any human effort. Healthcare companies who implement AI are entering a new era that is anticipated to revolutionize the industry by making various tasks more efficient, such as drug discovery, clinical trials, robotic surgery, and patient management.
For instance, Pharmaceutical giant Merck is working with Atomwise, the creator of AtomNet, which uses deep learning technology for the discovery of novel small molecules. Although the project is confidential, Merck is leveraging Atomwise’s AI-based technology to scan existing medicines that could be redesigned to fight old and upcoming diseases. This particular program found two medications to reduce Ebola infectivity in one day, which if done in a traditional method would have taken months or years.