Connect with us

Will AI Start to Replace Nurses?

A robotic nurse stands holding a food tray in an empty patient room.
Source: Canva

Could medical receptionists, assistants, and nurses be a thing of the past in ten years’ time? Time will only tell.

However, the industry does look like it’s leaning toward adopting more AI help throughout the next few years — which could mean better patient care and a more balanced load for tired and burned-out nurses. Read on to learn more.

Data cited by the American Nurses Association shows that nursing burnout is at an all time high; suggesting that nearly two-thirds of nurses are experiencing burnout in the industry. Additionally, 69% of the two-thirds of nurses experiencing burnout are under the age of 25 — which was relatively uncommon prior to the pandemic.

AI nursing could be a helpful solution for this concern, alleviating nursing staff of the time-consuming administrative tasks that can take them away from their core, skilled work. 

But how close is the healthcare industry to adopting these AI-led laborers, really? 

The DailyMail reports that a successful, unnamed hospital trial fueled hope that androids could take over the front desk soon. They were able to soothe patients, answer questions, converse, and complete basic administrative tasks — like advising how long the doctor would take with the patient ahead of them, and when they could expect to be seen as a result.* 

*The study referenced was part of the UK’s 7 million-pound ‘Socially Assistive Robots in Gerontological Healthcare’ project; and was led by the UK’s National Robortarium out of Heriot-Watt University in Edinburgh. 

The hypothesis of the study was that robots could become vital in productivity support for overworked nurses, boosting patient quality of care and supporting nursing retention rates as a result. They also noted the possibility of a lowered pathogen transmission risk, as there would be less provider-patient interface with robotic support. 

These types of robots are called “social robots,” and you might see them popping up in a town near you. Usually, they’ll be experimented with in socially-demanding, trainable roles; such as the role of a service worker in a fast-food chain restaurant. 

The future looks bright, per professor of AI Oliver Lemon. The DailyMail quoted the expert as affirming that “promising initial trials at Assistance Publique Hopitaux de Paris have demonstrated our robot’s ability to converse effectively with patients.” He also noted that they seemed to have the ability to carry out routine tasks, such as basic patient questions and answers and giving directions to lost patients. 

While the concept of robotic interference in patient care may be unnerving to some, it’s been happening for quite some time. Many surgeries are done using robotic or machine-led assistance, for example — especially in gastrointestinal, cardiothoracic, and gynecologic patient care areas. 

Robotic surgeries using sophisticated robotic tools to complete aren’t correlated with “bad outcomes,” either — the average risk and failure rate is no higher than 8%, in most cases.


You May Also Like

Experts Explain Why Sparkling Water is NOT a Substitute for Regular Water

Elon Musk Was Drug Tested for an Entire Year After Smoking Weed on Joe Rogan’s Podcast

Regular Soda vs. Diet Soda, Which is Actually Worse?

Positive Self-Talk Actually Works, According to Science

What You Eat Impacts Your Hair Health

The One Skincare Step You Absolutely Should Not Skip, According to Dermatologists