Although the use of artificial intelligence in health has not yet been regulated in Poland or the EU, medical facilities are already reaching for AI-based solutions. As a result, they face many challenges and uncertainties. The "White Paper on AI in clinical practice" is intended to answer them. The result of the self-regulation will be announced on June 14 at the "AI in Health" conference. 

- Artificial intelligence in health is already a reality. This is a huge opportunity to treat patients more effectively and more efficient functioning of the health care system. In practice, this means faster and more accurate diagnosis, implementation of proper treatment, as well as optimization of resources and costs," notes Ligia Kornowska, managing director of the Polish Hospital Federation, leader of the AI in Health Coalition.

Why does health need artificial intelligence?

Artificial intelligence algorithm-based innovation is playing an increasingly important role in many sectors and branches of the economy. The reason? They create many new opportunities, streamline work, increase efficiency. There are also many benefits from the application of artificial intelligence in the health sector. 

From the perspective of a doctor or a member of another medical profession, artificial intelligence in health means more time for the patient, valuable hints on recommended treatment, alerts on worrisome changes, a more personalized approach and relief from some of the administrative duties.  From the patient's perspective, some of the benefits alone are: new opportunities in the treatment process, a sense of security, faster access to services – adds Ligia Kornowska

Medics want clear guidelines

However, the forerunners of innovation in Polish medical facilities have to contend with the lack of regulations on the use of artificial intelligence in health. This applies to both European and national laws. The legislative process on the use of AI in health at the European Union level is at a relatively early stage. Meanwhile, medical facilities and doctors are already raising questions about how to use AI-based solutions in compliance with existing laws. This is primarily a matter of respecting patients' rights and the rules of medical practice and activity. 

Work on self-regulation already underway

The AI in Health Coalition's self-regulation initiative is a response to the challenges faced by doctors and other medical professionals in applying AI to health. It has involved a number of prominent Partners, including: Abbott, Comarch, IQVIA, LUX MED, Medicover, Microsoft.  The Artificial Intelligence Working Group at the Prime Minister's Office has also joined the work on self-regulation. The outcome of the self-regulation will be the "White Paper on AI in Clinical Practice".

Among the experts 

The establishment of the Scientific Council of the "White Paper on AI in Clinical Practice" also serves to develop clear guidelines. It has so far included, among others, representatives of the Minister of Health, the Patient Ombudsman, the Supreme Chamber of Physicians, the District Medical Chamber in Warsaw, the Piastów Śląskich Medical University in Wrocław and the Lazarski University's Institute for Healthcare Management. 

What will be included in the "White Paper"?

The White Paper on AI aims to identify the most important questions and concerns that arise in the daily practice of applying AI. From the document, it will be possible to find out what AI in healthcare is, what opportunities it provides, whether its use of health care is legally permissible, how artificial intelligence can support the medical professional and the patient, and what is public policy on the development of artificial intelligence in health care. The authors of the document also devoted considerable attention to patient rights. 

Clear guidelines for easy application

The White Paper on AI will point out proposed directions for responses and possible solutions that according to the authors, can help improve the safety and quality of AI use, and, as a result, to build confidence in this technology. It is intended to be as practical as possible, so that it translates into implementable ways of doing things. 

Effects of self-regulation after public consultation

Work by the medical, legal and technology industries on the document began at the beginning of the year in cooperation with DZP. "White Paper on AI in Clinical Practice" went out for public consultation in May. After their completion, a final version of the self-regulation was developed, which was announced at the AI in Health conference scheduled for June 14 this year .