AI's Role in Overcoming One of Healthcare's Biggest Challenges: Sustainability

Teresa Power
April 26, 2024
min read

Understaffed and overworked personnel. Complicated payer requirements. Claims denied for ambiguous reasons. Healthcare professionals know all too well these issues that prevent us from providing optimal and sustainable patient care. 

How do we screen, diagnose, treat, and follow up with the growing number of patients who need and deserve care? How do we do so without completely overwhelming the healthcare professionals dedicated to providing that care? The answer is clear - sustainability in healthcare depends on the development and adoption of Artificial Intelligence (AI) tools.

According to HIMSS President and CEO Harold F. (Hal) Wolf, “We need radical transformation. We must build the health system of the future.” With an aging population, staffing shortages, and limited resources, healthcare organizations are grappling with the challenges of delivering high-quality care while managing our healthcare system's ever-increasing complexities and hurdles. The search for operational efficiency with the goal of enhanced patient care is more pressing than ever. As we look towards the future, healthcare executives must focus on accelerating Digital Health and AI tools to propel operations and patient care forward in a sustainable way.

The transformative power of AI lies in its ability to streamline operations, enhance accuracy, and empower healthcare professionals to focus on what truly matters: providing exceptional patient care. By seamlessly integrating AI into healthcare workflows, the burdens of administrative tasks can be alleviated, and clinicians can dedicate their time and expertise to more compassionate care.

Task-based AI to reduce burnout

One of the key challenges faced by healthcare organizations is the overwhelming amount of manual, repetitive tasks that consume valuable time and resources. Patients often wait days, weeks, or even months to receive care that has been medically prescribed as administrators handle mountains of paperwork, data, and rules. For example, referrals and orders for prescription medical equipment come with significant documentation requiring tedious data extraction and entry. Despite the team member's expertise, this process is inherently prone to human error and fatigue. AI-driven solutions tackle this issue head-on by sorting and categorizing referral documentation and automating data entry. Effectively, AI allows the team member to automatically review and submit more orders, to get patients the care they need. 

Expanding to all corners of healthcare but specializing in sleep medicine, Synthpop’s AI agents transform a 15-minute process into a two-minute task. By accurately extracting relevant details from lengthy, multi-page referrals and validating the information against specific payor guidelines, this solution significantly reduces manual workload, reducing fatigue and enabling staff to focus on patient care.

Similarly, AI-assisted charting automatically transcribes, analyzes, and generates accurate patient records, freeing clinicians from the excessive burden of paperwork. A typical hospital produces enough data each year to fill multiple university libraries, with the majority of that data being "unstructured" in narrative-like notes. According to researchers from the Cerner Corporation, of about 100 million patient visits, chart review (33%), documentation (24%), and ordering (17%) accounted for most of the time spent using EHRs on average per patient visit. Although proper documentation is critical for patient care, it can take away from human interaction that builds trust between providers and patients. Alternatively, notes are often transcribed after hours by administrators, support staff, and clinicians, contributing to the high rates of burnout in healthcare.

Accuracy & security concerns overcome with the right AI solutions

In the realm of healthcare, accuracy is paramount. Medical record or claim submission errors can have severe consequences for patients and healthcare organizations. AI solutions are designed to enhance accuracy across various aspects of healthcare operations. For example, Synthpop’s  “AI agents” are trained on the most accurate and updated guidelines, which are used as context for all work. For example, consider a claims management solution that leverages AI to streamline the prior authorization and appeals process. Clinical necessity can be established based on the documentation without significant human effort. These solutions save hours of documentation while ensuring the accuracy of claims submissions. 

The fusion of large language models (LLMs) and generative AI has enabled a variety of applications that were previously thought implausible by quickly consuming and understanding massive amounts of clinical data, payor policies, and clinical guidelines. Synthpop AI agents are tireless, accurate, easy to update, and infinitely patient when learning and using the training data to assist healthcare professionals. 

Moreover, AI solutions are built with interoperability and HIPAA compliance in mind, offering healthcare organizations peace of mind regarding data security and regulatory adherence. According to Riddhiman Das, Chief Executive Officer, Tripleblind, “Prioritizing privacy and security are essential. All AI/machine learning solutions must uphold stringent privacy standards, safeguarding patient data and confidentiality…Responsible use, coupled with privacy protection, can transform global health, enhance patient care and bridge healthcare gaps for a healthier, more equitable world.”

Synthpop takes the approach of using synthetic data to replicate the statistical properties of real-world data, eliminating all personally identifiable information.  The AI agents adhere to the most stringent privacy regulations without sacrificing data quality or output accuracy. You can see more details about this approach in the Synthpop’s white paper. 

Embracing a better future for healthcare 

As we navigate the challenges and opportunities of the future, it is clear that AI will play a pivotal role in shaping the healthcare landscape. By leveraging the power of AI, healthcare organizations can create an ecosystem that is more efficient, accurate, and, above all, human-centric. With ever-improving interfaces, comprehensive training, and hands-on support, the adoption of AI technology has become accessible and user-friendly for healthcare professionals at all levels.

The journey towards AI-driven healthcare is not without its challenges, but the potential benefits are immense. As healthcare organizations navigate this transformative landscape, they need trusted partners who offer innovative solutions and the necessary expertise and support to succeed.

By embracing the power of AI and partnering with visionary companies, healthcare organizations can take a significant step forward, redefining the standards of care and creating a future where every patient receives the personalized, compassionate attention they deserve. The AI revolution in healthcare is here, and it's time to embrace it. 

Join us as we streamline healthcare, one workflow at a time. Click here to connect with our Synthpop team.

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