The optimization of the technological level in the world industry changes greatly the whole paradigm of the labor itself. The intelligent machines are rightly considered the upcoming next generation of industry. With every month the systems receive new knowledge, upgraded skills and their work becomes more and more productive and effective. The amount of tasks performed by the computers is truly hard to apprehend. The life in our world becomes easier and more riches appear to be available for people.
The technological giants of the world like Apple, IBM, Google and Microsoft won’t seize the battle for domination over the world of high technologies. Each tries to promote their own achievements and in some cases they unite for mutual benefit. In this race for the AI improvement a set of important ethical questions has emerged. These questions are specifically important with the increasing role of the AI that was constructed for medical purposes. So what exactly ethical questions arise from the side of medical artificial intelligence?
What will happen to the doctors
Unemployment – this is probably the greatest fear of people who face the real threat from the side of robots. We all understand that machine doesn’t feel tired, doesn’t require rest or medical insurance and there is no need for a paid vacation. In addition, the machine can work faster and more effectively. The work of a doctor is quite specific one as it demands a lot of cognition. The robotic labor is better combinable with mechanical one. As we can see the AI is more applicable at present for industrial labor.
However, more and more improvements are added to the intellect which works directly with human being. The medical AI is a totally separate category as it needs to be able to conduct a decent mental operations judging from the data of the person’s outer look and the analysis of the data. Currently the AI lacks the quality of interpersonal communication but it is capable to provide a thorough data interpretation based on blood, X-ray, urine or any other source material. The final diagnosis and treatment issue is still in hands of human doctors. It is true that a machine is better with numbers and general statistic organization but it lacks the skills of communication with people and still needs further improvements.
The Strength of Humanism
The artificial intellect is becoming better and better with each year. The latest news proved the potential capability of the machine to understand the human conversation and even discern some basic emotions.
The main issue that arises from the situation with AI is the acceptance of the machine, as is pointed out by Dr. Lee Ann McDormack, the head pharmacy technician at Canadian Health and Care Mart. Let’s imagine that you are communicating with the machine entity while you are in the hospital. Will you consider it a living being or just a set of programmed zeros? And what if something happens, who will carry the blame. Here we have the most fundamental question that will surely take place after the AI will develop to the right level – what is the human and humanism. Can the machine own the qualities of a real doctor?
Another vital aspect of the machine ethics is the compassion when the doctor will be capable to experience some part of the pain belonging to the patient. The sharing of mutual pain usually contributes to the healing process together with the empathy flow from the side of the doctor.
It is hard to imagine some confidant talk with a machine intellect and hope for some mutual understanding as it often happens between people.
The Mistakes of the Machine
While passing the stage of study the machine can face a lot of difficulties. The medicine machine’s intellect is based on the neural networks which involves the use of the existing data patterns. However, the patterns can have differences and even the slightest miscalculation can lead to issues.
The training should be as thorough as possible and constantly monitored by experts. Even after the teaching is over there is still a share of risk that something might go wrong and the responsibility of wrong diagnosis or treatment will be placed either on a software designer or on the person who conducted the training, though the decision was made by an AI.
Another risk of the machine is the hacking possibility. The data can leak into the web and fall into the wrong hands if it won’t be properly protected. The personal data should be preserved at special servers with a maximal protection level.
There are still a lot of issues regarding the AI development and ethical questions are in the top priority among the society. There are a lot of risks but the reward is truly worth the time and energy spent on the creation of AI doctors.