Survey highlights doctors’ concerns with AI influencing medical diagnoses and treatments
A sizable portion of medical practitioners harbour reservations about the burgeoning role of artificial intelligence (AI) in shaping diagnostic and treatment protocols, as indicated by a recent survey’s findings.
The study, unveiled by Medscape on Monday (13th of November, 2023), suggests that a majority, approximately 65 per cent, of the surveyed physicians harbour either significant or moderate concerns regarding AI’s burgeoning role in informing diagnostic and therapeutic decisions. Conversely, a smaller group, constituting 36 per cent, expressed minimal or no concern over the incorporation of AI in these critical areas of healthcare.
The survey also shed light on the varying degrees of receptivity towards AI among healthcare professionals. While 42 per cent of respondents expressed enthusiasm about the prospects of AI integration in their daily work, a notable 30 per cent remained ambivalent, and an apprehensive 28 per cent displayed reservations regarding its future implications.
Echoing the sentiments of caution, former Food and Drug Administration Commissioner Scott Gottlieb, in a July opinion piece, prognosticated that AI’s integration into medical practice could supplant certain functions traditionally performed by physicians, and that such a shift might occur sooner than anticipated.
“Whilst the question of ‘if’ AI will replace some of the doctors’ responsibilities is becoming obsolete, the more pressing issue is ‘when’. For certain tasks, this technologically driven future is closer than we might envisage,” Gottlieb asserted.
The responses to the Medscape survey, however, revealed a more welcoming stance towards AI as a collaborative tool in diagnosis and treatment, with a significant 56 per cent of physicians indicating keen or moderate enthusiasm for AI as a complementary aid. The remaining 44 per cent reported feeling some degree of apprehension towards AI assistance.
Interestingly, the survey highlighted a generational divide in perceptions of AI, with younger doctors, particularly those under 35, displaying less enthusiasm compared to their middle-aged counterparts aged between 45 and 54 years.
This comprehensive survey, which ran from July 12 to August 11, garnered responses from 1,043 participants spanning over 29 medical specialties. The results carry a sampling error margin of 3.03 percent, ensuring 95 per cent confidence in the data gathered.