DOI: 10.1055/s-0043-1768733 ISSN: 0943-4747

Automation in Contemporary Clinical Information Systems: a Survey of AI in Healthcare Settings

Farah Magrabi, David Lyell, Enrico Coiera
  • General Medicine

Aims and objectives: To examine the nature and use of automation in contemporary clinical information systems by reviewing studies reporting the implementation and evaluation of artificial intelligence (AI) technologies in healthcare settings.

Method: PubMed/MEDLINE, Web of Science, EMBASE, the tables of contents of major informatics journals, and the bibliographies of articles were searched for studies reporting evaluation of AI in clinical settings from January 2021 to December 2022. We documented the clinical application areas and tasks supported, and the level of system autonomy. Reported effects on user experience, decision-making, care delivery and outcomes were summarised.

Results: AI technologies are being applied in a wide variety of clinical areas. Most contemporary systems utilise deep learning, use routinely collected data, support diagnosis and triage, are assistive (requiring users to confirm or approve AI provided information or decisions), and are used by doctors in acute care settings in high-income nations. AI systems are integrated and used within existing clinical information systems including electronic medical records. There is limited support for One Health goals. Evaluation is largely based on quantitative methods measuring effects on decision-making.

Conclusion: AI systems are being implemented and evaluated in many clinical areas. There remain many opportunities to understand patterns of routine use and evaluate effects on decision-making, care delivery and patient outcomes using mixed-methods. Support for One Health including integrating data about environmental factors and social determinants needs further exploration.

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