Bridging the Health Tech Gap | UMBC Industry News

At UMBC, we strive to bridge the gap between technology and health with our innovative Health Information Technology program.

In today’s Industry News, we look at the creation and implementation of information technologies in the health sector, from AI mental health resources to cyberattack prevention.

How AI Can Change Healthcare

AI technology is expected to influence many sectors of society in the near future, and health care is no exception. By increasing the use of AI technology, the health sector aims to make health care more comprehensive. This is especially true when it comes to seeking help from home. These technologies won’t be exclusive to physical health. Researchers also hope to channel the strategies of mental health professionals into an AI that expresses empathy and asks open-ended questions. Although it’s not a perfect substitute for human connection, these AI processes offer a quick, affordable alternative to traditional mental health resources.

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Protecting Hospitals from Cyber Attacks

Recently, France has experienced a wave of “cyber-criminals”. They criminals are hackers who target a facility’s critical IT networks. They demand a ransom for their release. Hospitals are common targets of these cyberattacks, relying on databases and other IT infrastructures to provide care. After receiving one billion euros from President Emmanuel Macron, the French health sector has begun fighting back against these attacks. They announced a comprehensive cybersecurity training program for health professionals. By preparing employees to respond to these types of crises, the French government hopes to minimize both the frequency and damage of cyberattacks. 

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AI, IoT, and the Future of Patient Data

The Internet of Things (IoT) – defined as electronics that connect to the internet but aren’t traditional computing devices – has become a prominent force in the tech world. These include things that range from smartwatches to household Alexas. Now, researchers are uncovering the capability of the combination of IoT and AI technologies. In the healthcare industry, this collaboration could optimize the efficiency of health facilities, helping them provide necessary services to as many communities as possible. According to researchers, the nature of AI could be well-suited to administrative tasks such as data management, saving valuable time for doctors and other health care professionals.

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Preventing Pandemics Through Data Analysis

The collaboration between IoT and AI doesn’t stop at day-to-day hospital functions. The technology could also be useful in a future pandemic. The coordinated and data-driven nature of AI analysis may be the key to upholding strong and consistent public health infrastructure in the face of future crises. There are many aspects of pandemic preparation that can involve digital tools, such as health screenings, remote medicine, quarantine orchestration, and community outreach.

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