Society is smitten with the advances of digital technologies not only from the impact that the Internet and social media have on trends, knowledge, and progress of humanity, but also as a disruptive platform in self-care and health management. While wearables, web and mobile apps have become a great tool for consumers to monitor and track their health, now it is artificial intelligence that is disrupting the way people perceive, experience, and engage in health. This shift is helping increase the awareness of consumers on brands and treatments that may lead to potential market expansion, sales, and visibility for organizations and firms involved in the consumer health industry.
Trying the AI experience through a simple question
I did a Google’s voice activated search in my mobile phone with the question of “OK Google I have a cold, what should I take?” To my surprise Google responded in both voice and content on how I should treat my cold. Most interestingly is that the top answer provided by the Mayo Clinic mentioned a distinction between pediatric and adult care, even to the point of mentioning brands such as Tylenol, Motrin (Johnson & Johnson) and Advil (Pfizer). The advent of home personal assistants such as Amazon Echo (Alexa) and Google Home will take this AI technology even further, especially when people are sick at home and need quick advice from the healthcare practitioner or pharmacist. In fact companies such as GSK have envisioned this new era. Also, voice-activated purchases via AI assistants can expedite the delivery or pick up of a needed non-prescription medicine for minor conditions.
Chatbots to become a reliable health advisor
Alternatively, chatbots guiding people on self-care and the treatment of minor conditions at home or on the go will become more ubiquitous. Companies such as Ada Health, Med What, Your.MD, and Babylon Health – this last just partnered with the National Health Service (NHS) this year in the UK amongst others are launching chat bots based on medical mobile apps powered by AI that provides a reliable and personalized advice to consumers at fast speed any time of the day. The savings are tremendous with this type of technology, not only in the pockets of consumers for not having to travel to the point of care and pay for a consultation, but also for healthcare practitioners wishing to save in healthcare delivery costs for minor conditions such as a common cold that could be safely treated at home. Next to emerge will be the chatbot pharmacist recommending people what to take and providing additional information on safety and risks of medications.
As AI evolves it will take an even more important role in self-care. I invite you to use a mobile AI personal assistant to discover the wealth of information on health and the recommendation of brands now available to consumers like you.