Monday, September 12, 2011

Watson, come quickly...


Remember the attention IBM received when they put their supercomputer up against previous Jeopardy winners and it beat them severely. Well it appears the supercomputer nicknamed Watson has found a new job with a major health insurance company, WellPoint.

Taking test results, medical history and all other information about the patient, the computer can make a diagnosis and treatment plan in approximately 3 seconds. Supposedly, this will be only another tool to help make decisions. I think it could be a good tool and talking to a computer might be an improvement on some doctors bedside manner.

However, dig a little deeper and you find there is also a plan for the computer to take into consideration the patient’s financial situation. Remember this is a for profit health insurance company that will be using this machine. So does anyone think for a second that a treatment plan for someone who is homeless versus someone who is financially well off will be the same?

This reminds me of a time when they said machines and computers will never replace humans on assembly lines or in manufacturing.

5 comments:

Cartoon Characters said...

I saw this on the news this am...was going to post on it....

you did a MUCH better job! :)

interesting...hmm?

Lynda Halliger-Otvos said...

"So does anyone think for a second that a treatment plan for someone who is homeless versus someone who is financially well off will be the same?”

Does anyone think for a second that this is not happening now? Think again.

NP Odyssey said...

CC, it is interesting maybe I should have studied to be an engineer to fix computers.

Lynda, it is happening now. There is a well documented health to wealth gradient, but just here in other industrialized coutries as well. The more $ the better the care.

Nurse and Hospital Stories said...

"This reminds me of a time when they said machines and computers will never replace humans on assembly lines or in manufacturing."

Frightening. Hope robots will not completely be our nurses or doctors. They may be productive and great, yet one thing they lack that true human nurses have is a lot of compassion.

Thanks for sharing,
Penelope@sphygmomanometer

Paige said...

wow. thats crazy.