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Philips Global Survey Finds Healthcare Leaders to Increase AI Investment Post COVID-19 Pandemic

By HospiMedica International staff writers
Posted on 10 May 2021
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Investments in artificial intelligence (AI) by healthcare leaders is all set to increase after the COVID-19 pandemic, according to the largest global survey of its kind covering nearly 3,000 healthcare leaders globally.

Royal Philips’ (Amsterdam, the Netherlands) Future Health Index (FHI) 2021 report: ‘A Resilient Future: Healthcare leaders look beyond the crisis’ is based on proprietary research across 14 countries, representing the largest global survey of its kind to analyze the current and future priorities of healthcare leaders worldwide. Feedback from healthcare leaders - including executive officers, financial officers, technology and information officers, operations officers and more - explores the challenges they have faced since the onset of the pandemic, and where their current and future priorities lie, revealing a new vision for the future of healthcare. With a focus on patient-centered healthcare enabled by smart technology, their vision is shaped by a fresh emphasis on partnerships, sustainability and new models of care delivery, both inside and outside the hospital.

While still grappling with the pandemic, 64% of healthcare leaders around the world continue to prioritize telehealth when it comes to digital health technology investments. This number is particularly high in the US (89%). However, in the next three years, only 40% expect to invest heavily in telehealth and AI emerges as a key area for investment (36% today, 74% in three years). Healthcare leaders in emerging economies like Saudi Arabia (98%), India (94%) and Russia (85%) plan to prioritize investments in AI the most in 2024, even more than those in the US. (80%).

Roughly one third (36%) of European healthcare leaders and one quarter (27%) of those in APAC agree that, to be prepared for the future, their hospital or healthcare facility most needs to invest in implementing predictive technologies like AI and machine learning. Notably, in technologically advanced Singapore, the numbers are higher, with nearly two thirds (62%) of healthcare leaders prioritizing an investment in AI post-pandemic. And while lower, Europe and APAC are still above the averages for the Americas (12%) and the Middle East & Africa (6%) when it comes to prioritizing AI in 2024.

“The Future Health Index 2021 report reflects pockets of positivity amid the COVID-19 crisis. Healthcare leaders have seen first-hand how digital health technology can ensure the continued delivery of care in incredibly difficult circumstances,” said Jan Kimpen, Chief Medical Officer, Philips. “Many are now reassessing their technology capabilities as they consider what’s next. While we can’t be sure what the next few years hold, what shines forth from this report is that healthcare leaders are committed to building healthcare systems that are sustainable, adaptable and - above all - resilient.”

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