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Nvidia and Hippocratic AI Introduce AI Nurses to Healthcare

ByHuey Yee Ong

Mar 27, 2024
Nvidia and Hippocratic AI Introduce AI Nurses to Healthcare

Nvidia and Hippocratic AI Introduce AI Nurses to Healthcare

Nvidia, in partnership with healthcare startup Hippocratic AI, has unveiled a new category of AI-powered healthcare agents. These agents, designed to conduct various patient care tasks virtually, are poised to revolutionize the way healthcare providers operate, offering an innovative solution to the nursing shortage while sparking discussions about the future of human roles in healthcare.

Bridging the Gap in Healthcare with AI

Nvidia, a leading chipmaker, and Hippocratic AI are at the forefront of integrating generative artificial intelligence into the healthcare sector. Their collaboration has birthed “GenAI Healthcare Agents,” with a notable example being an agent named Rachel.

Rachel demonstrates the capability of these AI nurses by conducting a post-appendectomy follow-up in real-time, asking and answering case-specific questions during a demonstration video. This initiative is part of a broader strategy to address non-diagnostic, patient-facing tasks considered “low risk,” such as

  • Post-operative check-ins
  • Nutritional guidance, and
  • Pharmacy communications.

With more than 40 healthcare providers currently testing this technology, the implications are significant. Hippocratic AI’s vision extends to leveraging these AI agents to:

  • Alleviate the persistent nursing shortages in the United States, and
  • Reduce the financial burden on healthcare providers by offering a cost-effective alternative to human nurses (However, numerous public health experts and nurses argue that staff shortages stemmed from systemic underfunding and cost-cutting measures.)

The Economic and Ethical Implications

The introduction of AI nurses by Nvidia and Hippocratic AI is a testament to the evolving role of technology in healthcare. With a cost of just $9 per hour, these AI agents present a stark contrast to the $90 hourly wage of human nurses. This cost-efficiency, as emphasized by Hippocratic AI, does not compromise the quality of care. The company asserts that its AI nurses can match or even exceed human nurses in areas such as bedside manner and patient education, based on their surveys.

However, this development arrives at a contentious moment for the nursing profession. The past year saw over 32,000 nurses participate in strikes, highlighting the acute worker shortages and challenging conditions that have plagued the industry even before the COVID-19 pandemic. Hippocratic AI aims to address these challenges by offering a scalable solution to the imbalance between healthcare supply and demand, asserting that “Generative AI” could dramatically reduce the incremental cost of healthcare access and interventions.

Notably, the AI nurses are not designed to make diagnoses. They are programmed to engage human healthcare professionals when necessary, adhering to the ethical principle of “first, do no harm,” inspired by the Hippocratic Oath. This initiative underscores Nvidia’s broader ambitions within the AI sector, as revealed at their 2024 GTC Conference. The announcement coincided with the launch of new AI chips and expanded partnerships, further cementing Nvidia’s position as an industry leader in AI development.

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Featured Image courtesy of whyframestudio, Getty Images/iStockphoto

Huey Yee Ong

Hello, from one tech geek to another. Not your beloved TechCrunch writer, but a writer with an avid interest in the fast-paced tech scenes and all the latest tech mojo. I bring with me a unique take towards tech with a honed applied psychology perspective to make tech news digestible. In other words, I deliver tech news that is easy to read.

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