3 Ways Machine Learning Is Benefiting Your Healthcare

Judith Kniepeiss our consultant managing the role
Posting date: 2/13/2020 9:19 AM
With Data-led roles leading the list in the World Economic Forum’s ‘Jobs of the Future’ report, it is no surprise that Data Science continues to be the main driving force behind a number of technological advancements. From the Natural Language Processing (NLP) that powers your Google Assistant, to Computer Vision identifying scanning pictures for specific objects and the Deep Learning techniques exploring the capability of computers to become “human”, innovation is everywhere. 

It’s unsurprising, then, that the world of healthcare is fascinated by the possibilities Data Science can offer,  possibilities which could not only make your and my life better, but also save several thousands of lives around the world.

To just scrape the surface, here are three examples of how Machine Learning (ML) techniques are being used to benefit our healthcare. 

COMPUTER VISION FOR IMAGING DIAGNOSTICS 


Have you ever had a broken leg or arm and saw a x-ray scan of your fracture? Can you remember how the doctor described the kind of fracture to you and explained where exactly you can see it in the picture?

The same thing that your doctor did a few years ago, can now be done by an algorithm that will identify the type of fracture, and provide insights into how you should treat it.

And it’s not just fractures; Google's AI DeepMind can spot breast cancer as well as your radiologist. By feeding a Machine Learning model the mammograms of 76,000 British women, Google’s engineers taught the system to spot breast cancer in a screen scan. The result? A system as accurate as any radiologist. 

We‘ve already reached the point where Machine Learning and AI can no longer just outsmart us at a board game, but can benefit our everyday lives, including in as sensitive use-cases as the healthcare industry.

NLP AS YOUR PERSONAL HEALTH ASSISTANT 


When we go to our GP, we go to see someone with a medical education and clinical understanding who can evaluate our health problems. We go there because we trust in the education of this person and their ability to give us the best information possible.

However, thanks to the rise of the internet, we’ve turned to search engines and WebMD to self-diagnose online, often reading blogs and forums that will convince us we have cancer instead of a common cold. 

Fortunately, technology has advanced to the point where it can assist with an on-the-spot (much more accurate) evaluation of your medical condition. By conversing with an AI, like the one from Babylon Health, we can gain insights into possible health problem, define the next steps we need to take and know whether or not we need to see a doctor in person. 

There’s no need to wait for opening times or to sit bored in a waiting room. Easy access from your phone democratises the process and advice can be received by anyone, at any time.   

DEEP LEARNING DRAWS CONCLUSIONS BETWEEN MEDICAL STUDIES


Despite their extensive qualifications, even medical researchers can feel overwhelmed by the sheer amount of Insights and Data that are gathered around the world in hospitals, labs, and across various studies. No wonder it’s not uncommon for important Insights and Data to get forgotten in the mix.

Once again, Machine Learning can help us out. Instead of getting lost in a sea of medical data, ML algorithms can dig deep and find the information medical researchers really need. By efficiently sifting a through vast amounts of medical data, combining certain datasets and providing insights, ML sources ways for treatments to be improved, medicines to be altered, and, as a result, can save lives.

And this is only the beginning. As Machine Learning continues to improve we can expect huge advances in the following years, from robotic surgery to automated hospitals and beyond.

If you’re an expert in Machine Learning, we may have a job for you. Take a look at our latest opportunities of get in touch with one of our expert consultants to find out more. 

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With over 10 years experience working solely in the Data & Analytics sector our consultants are able to offer detailed insights into the industry.

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Is Computer Vision at the Core of the New Normal?

Computer Vision is one of the fastest growing markets in Data & Analytics. While it was on a trajectory prior to the pandemic, the needs we have now have amped up the role Computer Vision plays in our day-to-day lives and businesses who want to keep up or get ahead are paying attention.  Unexpected Businesses Using Computer Vision Some unusual players leaning on these technologies are grocery stores. While some have pivoted to pickup and delivery, others have remained stagnant with yesterday’s shopping habits changed only to individuals in store wearing masks. For those who made the leap to the "new normal", they’re using things like shelf sensors and Machine Learning to automate ordering and determine best placement of a product. Though retail stores are no stranger to video analytics, the rise of Deep Learning and AI offer a more rapid analysis of video for real-time threat assessment. Teaching the machine to watch for crowding, erratic movement, or potential conflict allows for quick reaction or proactive measures to stop a conflict in play. Yet, behind all this Machine Learning and Computer Vision elements are people. Real live humans. And it’s their new normal which is a strong part of the world’s new normal as most everyone shifts and remains online, working remotely. Behaviours are changing and many businesses have differentiated themselves from others by staying ahead of the game.        Five Ways Businesses Are Moving Forward in the New Normal Remote work is here to stay. A jump of 18% of remote working after the pandemic is expected to remain key to many businesses. And nearly three quarters of executives, plan to increase their remote workers. Key components of this new change will be to bring onboard those with strong digital collaboration skills, ability to manage virtually, and reassess how goals and objectives are to be decided. How will businesses keep remote employees engaged, enthused, and feel part of the team when they could be miles or countries apart?Gig Workers as Cost-Saving Measure. As employees move out of office and online, gig workers are a go-to for businesses hoping to move forward and keep costs low. Performance management systems will need to be re-evaluated. After all, if the idea is to keep costs low (read: overhead), then how does the debate about whether or not to offer benefits fit in to the mix?Definitions are Changing. Whether the definition includes ‘critical skills,’ ‘critical role,’ or something similar. What these meant once are changing. Now, the focus is on how to encourage, mentor, or coach employees in professional development skills which can open up a variety of opportunities versus one set path to one set role.Keeping Track Virtually. Though most businesses tend to follow the model of ‘productivity and performance’ over simply hours worked, some organisations passively track their remote workforce. This keeping track can include timeclock software virtually managed to computer usage to monitoring communications. Several benefits of data tracking in this manner could be a boon to HR Managers as it could help to understand employee engagement. But it’s a fine line to traverse.Organisational Redesign Done with Efficiency in Mind. As everything from products to people move online, it’s more important than ever to ensure things like logistics, supply chains, and workflows are designed with efficiency in mind. Computer Vision AI models can help take these systems to the next level as things like grocery shopping, retail, and legacy businesses find their business must go online or pivot in the new normal to survive. In our recently released 2020 Salary Guide we discuss each specialism. What’s working. What isn’t. And how businesses can hire and retain top talent to keep their projects on track and their businesses running smoothly.If you’re interested in Data & Technology, Risk or Digital Analytics, Life Sciences Analytics, Marketing & Insight, or Data Science, check out our current opportunities. Alternatively, you can contact one of our expert consultants if you’d like to learn more. 

Life Science Analytics Lead the Way to a New Normal

The Life Science Analytics industry has always beaten to its own drum. But in the days of Covid-19, there’s a different feel and it’s one in which teams are coming together and candidates are staying longer in jobs where they feel connected and impactful.  As the drive for a vaccine and the virtually overnight demand for telemedicine and contactless care come to bear, this industry which once seemingly fell behind that of retail and banking has caught up. So, what can businesses like biotech, pharmaceutical, and other healthcare providers do to retain and keep top candidates? EXPAND AND GROW YOUR TEAM LOCALLY AND GLOBALLY Reskill and Upskill for Career Advancement - If you’re lucky enough to have retained top talent, re-consider tenure-based positions. Advance your great candidates based on performance, need, upskilling, or reskilling. You may already have someone on staff who can do the job you need done or have the potential. Let them. The world has been moving faster than it ever has in this year alone its jumped into warp speed.Consider Global Collaboration – While many professionals, in every industry are working from home these days, some simply can’t due to the nature of their business. In this case, the need to be in the lab. However, as the Life Sciences & Analytics industry leads the way in their approach to flexible hours and the available Data on COVID-19, for example, global collaborations allow teams to do their work without the need for lab access.In demand technical skills - Candidates skilled in Data gathering, algorithm development, and predictive modeling are in high demand as well as AutoML, NLP, and other Machine Learning solutions. In demand soft skills – As the impact of the above technical skills increase and offer proven solutions, it will be important to have Data professionals who cannot only manage the technical side of things, but who can also explain solutions to the nontechnical and business executives in plain language. Since the start of the year, we’ve seen a massive shift in the way we do business. While for some businesses, it was business as usual for the most part. For others, it completely reinvented others. Healthcare and Life Sciences are no exception. And in the healthcare industry, they’ve been stretched in ways unimaginable just last year. And have learned a new respect for numbers and accurate Data. Two things vital to moving forward. A NEW RESPECT FOR NUMBERS AND ACCURATE DATA This new respect for accurate numbers and Data will help teams align to predict new threats while tracking current ones. In other words, no one will be caught off guard next time as the Life Sciences and Healthcare industry prepare for a post pandemic transformation. And how will it impact the industry moving forward? Work from home policies, global teams, telemedicine, the demand for PPE and ventilators, even the demands of the financial side of healthcare have shifted. But with the right data, innovation, and improved efficiency, it’s a sure bet the industry won’t be caught unawares again. WELCOME TO THE NEW NORMAL Though every profession has been hard hit during the pandemic, it’s the healthcare industry which has seen an even greater shift in the need demands to be met, shifting priorities, and patient care delivery has gone online. By moving forward with telemedicine and other automated services, the revenue cycle of the industry, too, has seen a shift. Yet to maintain business continuity, they must close the revenue gap. And here’s where Life Science Analytics meets FinTech and InsurTech. All of these industries will need Data professionals who can speak code and translate it to the nontechnical. All will need professionals with skillsets in predictive modelling, automation, Machine Learning, AI, and more. Is it you they’re looking for?  If you’re interested in Data & Technology, Risk or Digital Analytics, Life Science Analytics, Marketing & Insight, or Data Science jobs we invite you to check out our current vacancies or get in touch with one of our expert consultants to find out more. 

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