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Symposium Explores AI Revolution in Health Care

Apr 04, 2024   |   Dartmouth News

Artificial intelligence presents a huge opportunity to tackle complex health care challenges but there are also great risks, Center for Precision Health and Artificial Intelligence Director Saaed Hassanpour said as he set the stage for the inaugural symposium of the newly launched center [which includes Professors Ryan Halter and Margie Ackerman as technical associate directors].

President Sian Leah Beilock discusses the interdisciplinary focus at Dartmouth to benefit society. (Photo by Katie Lenhart)

The one-day AI in Medicine: Bridging Innovation & Practice event, held at the Hanover Inn, highlighted AI-driven innovations that are already changing the landscape of health care and sparked thoughtful discussions on recognizing potential pitfalls that the technology presents.

Building on its well-known legacy in AI—the term artificial intelligence was first coined here—and a rich history of innovation in health care—the first diagnostic medical imaging in the US was performed here—Dartmouth is uniquely positioned to play a significant role at the intersection of these two disciplines, said Hassanpour, professor of biomedical data science, epidemiology, and computer science.

His sentiments were echoed by President Sian Leah Beilock, who delivered opening remarks to kick off the symposium.

"I know this is a fast-growing field and it requires people coming together from different fields to work together," Beilock said. "Our size and scale allows us to do something that's really special, which is talk across disciplines, and that's really where I see the crux of what Dartmouth has to contribute."

She called attention to several research efforts already underway at Dartmouth, from the development of AI tools to help diagnose colorectal cancer and identify novel biomarkers for breast cancer to using AI to create more effective mental health technologies.

The talks and panel discussions that followed showcased the power of using AI to unlock valuable insights from vast stores of digital health data, paving the way for more efficient and personalized care while raising important and complex questions about security, privacy, biases, ethics, and equity...

...The afternoon sessions turned the spotlight on how Dartmouth researchers across disciplines are exploring new ideas and creating novel technologies and its commitment and leadership in fostering responsible innovation as a member of the international AI Alliance.

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