Your medical device becomes smarter… and more reliable!
While still a relatively new tool in healthcare, artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) technologies offer immense opportunities to drive transformational advancement at scale. industry. Yet, we still have a long way to go as medical devices become more complex and AI algorithm development paradigms are not transferable from the consumer to the clinical space.
Given the promise of AI and machine learning in improving patient care and the challenges faced by medical device engineers when adapting and refining these capabilities, the Medical Design and Manufacturing conference (MD&M) West is strongly focused on the idea of powerful solutions that will advance the maturation of advanced healthcare technologies. Scheduled to take place April 12-14 at the Anaheim Convention Center, MD&M West runs in tandem with four other engineering shows – WestPack, ATX West, D&M West and Plastec West, providing attendees with access to a Five-in-One Design and Manufacturing and Design Event. Engineer. To build. conference that connects multiple verticals and industries.
With the event on the near horizon, I spoke with renowned medical technology expert and prominent MD&M West speaker Siddharth Desai, President of HealthCare Evolution. We discussed industry trends and what attendees can expect to learn from his technical and forward-looking session.
The adoption of AI and ML in healthcare is accelerating. Could you talk about the current use of AI and ML in the field of medical devices and the opportunities these technologies offer?
Desai: AI and ML are invading the classical field of new product development in various ways and will change the future of medical devices. AI is an interdisciplinary approach to providing insights in the diagnosis, treatment, and post-treatment assessment of clinical challenges. This discipline is based on the development of firmware and algorithms; medical devices learn and are able to provide effective diagnosis of desired treatments and recommend and activate clinician/healthcare provider solutions.
These treatments are viable due to the analytical capabilities, computing power, and firmware algorithms developed by the most brilliant engineers and scientists. Thus, these capabilities are incorporated into medical devices as additional functionality to base devices and are added as modules or incorporated as separate devices. The applications of AI systems are diverse and span the entire healthcare field: “smart implants” that assess and improve total knee arthroplasty and post-treatment recovery; “intelligent algorithms” that improve the ability to diagnose tumours, improve the image of malignant tumors and allow more effective treatments in endoscopy; “smart AI-powered” infusion treatments that deliver effective dosing for specific treatment to the clinician and pharmacists; the “smart” data analysis that makes the optimal treatment suggested to a clinician: and the patient who can use AI reports to improve personal healthcare. AI/ML/DL is a wide opportunity and can be applied in the broad field of healthcare.
What challenges do we still need to overcome to improve the application of these technologies?
Desai: Since the discipline is emerging, the challenges are specific to its applicability. First and foremost, the idea that an “intelligent machine” can replace a clinician. By working with key opinion leaders and everyday clinicians, we realize that there is a certain level of skepticism. Clinicians undergo multi-year training and hands-on work to familiarize themselves with clinical practices. Thus, the adaptation curve and overall success will be based on strong AI/ML/DL responses.
Second, discipline must prove itself! Although bold predictions can be made, the clinical space and human beings are unique, and the ability to predict the outcome as a whole will be a unique challenge. If the model developed by engineers is inadequate or incorrect, AI solutions can have serious consequences. Thus, during the seminar, we will discuss critical success factors, solution planning and relevant case studies. We also define the basics of a business case to assess opportunities.
I understand you’re talking to MD&M West in April. What can participants expect to discover in your session?
Desai: Ours is a session directly relevant to those involved in the planning, development and management of medical device innovation. We have a fantastic roster of speakers who will discuss best practices and share their experiences in medical device design and development.
Speakers will discuss and share their expertise in product design and development throughout the product life cycle, from concept to product launches. We will discuss critical aspects of the development processes: capturing user input, detailed design and development processes and lessons learned, materials selection process, learning from world-renowned experts in TAVR development, and essence of the artificial intelligence. We will make this session interactive, relevant and exciting. Our mission is to learn and share our experiences so that participants have a good learning experience while having fun.
What excites you the most about meeting your peers in person at MD&M West?
Desai: I’ve been involved in the medical device industry since 1983. Having worked for startups to large corporations, I’ve enjoyed being a catalyst for change. The industry has been equally kind to me; I have known success as a collaborator of a leader. I feel compelled to learn and give back! Improving human lives excites me and allows me to think inside and outside the box. It continues to challenge me to learn new things.
I am delighted to share our session, my personal experiences, and to meet and learn from other conference participants. The pandemic has impacted all of our lives. But, as life returns to normal through vaccine innovation, the medical diagnostic industry with COVID-19 testing and face mask development is our industry’s direct contribution. We intend to share critical lessons learned, dive into ongoing innovation, and discuss the future as we can envision it in 2022 and beyond.
To listen to Siddharth’s presentation “Artificial Intelligence Platforms and Next Generation Applications and Use Cases”, register to attend MD&M West here.