Advertisement
| 18 April, 2017

Robo-surgeons: Survey shows healthcare customers ready to embrace robots for medical needs

Dominik Brumm of the Artificial Lab of the University of Zuerich looks at the humanoid robot ROBOY during a media presentation in Zurich

Dominik Brumm of the Artificial Lab of the University of Zuerich looks at the humanoid robot ROBOY during a media presentation in Zurich

Reuters/Arnd Wiegmann

Consumers are ready to embrace artificial intelligence (AI) and robots for their healthcare needs, according to a new survey.

18 April 2017

Consumers are ready to embrace artificial intelligence (AI) and robots for their healthcare needs, according to a new survey.

Around 55 percent of the participants in a study conducted by global consultancy firm PwC, which surveyed over 11,000 people from 12 countries across Europe, the Middle East and Africa, found medical customers are willing to use advanced technologies or robots with artificial intelligence to answer health questions, perform tests, make a diagnosis and recommend medical treatment.

Up to 73 percent of the survey’s respondents said they would be willing to accept robots instead of doctors conducting minor surgeries. In the Middle East, willingness ranged from 50 percent in the United Arab Emirates to 55 percent in Saudi Arabia and Qatar. Participants from the United Kingdom were the least willing to have robots perform minor surgeries, scoring only 36 percent.

“Whether we like it or not, AI and robotics are the future of healthcare, and the Middle East is poised to take advantage. Access to quality, affordable healthcare, and good health for everyone are the ultimate goals of all health systems, including the Middle East,” Tim Wilson, a Middle East health industries leader at PwC said in the company’s statement.

“And when you combine clinical workforce shortages in the Middle East, with more positive factors like a young, digitally minded population that, according to our survey, is willing to adopt AI and robotics, PwC thinks the Middle East could leapfrog other countries in these technologies. We would like to see the Middle East invest and become a global centre of excellence for AI and robotics in healthcare, bringing benefits locally and becoming a place that other countries look to for healthcare innovation,” he added.

Advertisement
Dubai Police used a robot to conduct interviews with jobseekers on the first day of the Careers UAE event held at Dubai World Trade Centre earlier this month.

AI and robots are expected to replace humans in the next 10 years, Peter Diamandis, a prominent technology scientist, said in February at a government summit in Dubai.

For more on robots and AI coming to the Middle East:

© Express 2017