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How spooked should I be anyway? AI enters the online medical diagnosis arena

aiblogfullSo you’ve got an ache, a pain or a rash, and you look online only to discover your worst fears—and no one to talk to. Ugh. Before you know it, you’re convinced you’re dying and new symptoms have been psychosomatically activated. Self-diagnosis without context or conversation has profound pitfalls. Now, there’s a new approach likely coming to a digital device near you. The first is Baidu’s artificial intelligence doctor, Melody the Medical Assistant, a conversational chat bot trained on medical textbooks and tested with doctors and medical students in China. It shows the evolution AI has been making online and the way it’s edging into healthcare. Spyglass has had the chance to work with some of the biggest names in healthcare and several very bright start-ups and many virtual assistant apps along the way, so this was of particular interest to us.

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Target’s Simplicity Challenge

Simplicity. It’s the key to the success of almost any consumer product. Healthcare should be no different, yet in this particular realm, touting yourself as “simple” and “user-friendly” is a task much more easily said than done. 75% of health care professionals — you know, the people selling this stuff — don’t even understand their own health care plans! Alarming.

Enter Target’s Simplicity Challenge, a campaign that uses the bright idea of crowd sourcing to find the next healthcare innovation. They simply posed the question – what would you do to simplify healthcare? The general public certainly made their ideas known, with submissions ranging from mobile app ideas and outreach programs, to TV spots and experiential gimmicks to help bring health care to the every-man’s level. Judging will be done by 11 industry experts procured by Target, representing the  best and brightest from organizations like Medtronic, United Health Group, IDEO and Target, of course.
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