The latest report from the KLAS Arch Collaborative highlights the perceptions of 66 healthcare executives. Researchers wanted to understand their current adoption, plans and challenges using generative artificial intelligence to make electronic health records work better for providers.
While respondents indicated excitement about generative AI, the researchers said in the report that many do not yet know where they will use the AI in their organizations. Those with a strategy are looking to increase documentation, patient communication and workflow efficiencies.
WHY IT MATTERS
To gather healthcare leader perspectives for the perception study, KLAS asked about the current use of genAI and vendors, technologies they plan to implement, and their thoughts on the biggest opportunities and challenges of generative AI in healthcare.
Most of the organizations that responded to the questionnaire – from large and small hospitals to ambulatory clinics and home health organizations – said they were likely to purchase and implement generative AI in 2024.
“Although only 25% of interviewed respondents have implemented generative AI solutions, 58% say their organization is likely to implement or purchase a solution within the next year,” the KLAS researchers said.
Those currently using genAI – larger organizations – report they are working with tools offered by EHR vendors like Epic, as well as from Google, Nuance, AWS and others, researchers said.
In addition to having more resources, larger health systems have data more readily available – along with data scientists on staff to drive implementation, they pointed out.
Accuracy and reliability are the greatest concerns as respondents worry that inaccuracies, bias and AI hallucinations would negatively impact patients and decisions.
“It is also important for solutions to be proven reliable by users,” KLAS said of the healthcare leaders.
Cost/ROI is the second most-mentioned challenge, followed by security/privacy, as organizations must encrypt data and apply strict access controls to safeguard protected patient information.
KLAS said it intends to publish further general AI insights with the Center for Connected Medicine early next year.
THE LARGER TREND
Epic is using AI to change the way EHRs work and it’s listening to ambient patient-provider conversations at more than 30 sites, said Sumit Rana, executive vice president of research and development.
“One site reported average savings of five-and-a-half hours per week,” he told Healthcare IT News last month.
“Another one looked at time spent by doctors after clinical hours, and they saw a 76% reduction in that time spent after clinic hours, which is, I think, fairly substantial.”
Tom Hallisey, digital health strategy lead at the Healthcare Association of New York and a board member at Columbia Memorial Health, said he advises organizations to ensure top leaders are heavily involved with the AI selection process to ensure AI implementation goals are measurable and specific.
“To ensure the best impact from AI investments, start a committee to collect and prioritize ideas, guide resource selections, review results of pilots, and assist with scaling,” he said.
Hallisey will be at the HIMSS AI Forum later this month to offer hospitals and health systems seeking to evaluate AI or already implementing it strategies for healthcare AI adoption.
ON THE RECORD
“By leveraging generative AI, respondents hope to automate the process of generating clinical notes, summaries and reports based on patient data, thereby saving a significant amount of time,” the KLAS researchers said.
The HIMSS AI in Healthcare Forum is taking place on December 14-15, 2023, in San Diego, California. Learn more and register.
Andrea Fox is senior editor of Healthcare IT News.
Healthcare IT News is a HIMSS Media publication.