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School & Program Updates

School & Program Updates

Vanderbilt: Application of AI to Health Care Initiative Launched

Watson Health has announced plans to make a 10-year, $50 million investment in joint research collaborations with Brigham and Women’s Hospital — the teaching hospital of Harvard Medical School — and Vanderbilt University Medical Center to advance the science of artificial intelligence (AI) and its application to major public health issues.

The scientific collaborations will focus on critical health problems that are ideally suited for AI solutions,  including the use of AI to improve the utility of electronic health records and claims data to address significant public health issues like patient safety, precision medicine and health equity. The research will also explore physician and patient user experience.

“Today, for example, physicians are spending an average of two hours with their electronic health records and deskwork for every hour of patient care, a phenomenon the American Medical Association says is leading to a steady increase in physician burnout. AI is the most powerful technology we have today to tackle issues like this one, but there is still a great deal of work to be done to demystify the real role of AI in healthcare with practical, proven results and clear-cut best practices.” said Dr. Kyu Rhee, vice president and chief health officer at IBM Watson Health.

Drawing on the respective areas of expertise of each organization, the collaborations will be a joint effort among IBM Watson Health’s, Dr. Gretchen Purcell Jackson, Dr. David Bates, chief of general internal medicine at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, and professor of medicine at Harvard Medical School, and VUMC’s Dr. Kevin Johnson, chair of the department of biomedical informatics, and Dr. Gordon Bernard, executive vice president for research.