– The market for tools and technologies to bring artificial intelligence into medical care is expected to see explosive growth over the next five years, according to a series of recent industry reports.
The opportunity for medical artificial intelligence products will reach $18.12 billion globally by 2025, says Big Market Research, representing a 49.6 percent compound annual growth rate (CAGR).
Deep learning is projected to drive much of the growth, while natural language processing (NLP) tools and products will continue to comprise a third of the overall healthcare AI market.
Both strategies are quickly progressing in sophistication and offer opportunities to extract actionable insights from unstructured or extremely complex data sets.
“Natural language processing allows for the conversion of datasets into legible narratives understood by medical professionals and patients likewise, which further helps in analyzing sentiments for personal improvement,” the report states.
“However, deep learning segment is poised to grow at the fastest CAGR of 51.1 percent, owing to its simplicity over other technologies and enhanced accuracy when trained with large amounts of data.”
Deep learning is a core component of computer vision, which is also projected to bring significant revenue to software and service vendors, added ResearchAndMarkets.com in a separate market analysis.
Computer vision allows machines to analyze images from diagnostic studies and may also play a role in identifying patient symptoms or characteristics from videos to aid in diagnosing movement disorders, mental health issues, or neurological disease.
Currently a $210 million market, computer vision is expected to see a 47.2 percent CAGR over the next four years. By 2023, computer vision products will be worth $1.4 billion for vendors of image-based solutions.
Deep learning and NLP will help to support applications related to clinical decision support and the personalization of care. Precision medicine will see some of the fastest growth, with a 52.1 percent CAGR throughout the study period, continued Big Market Research.
“This is attributed to the fact that AI can support studies at gene level that requires advanced technology and systems where huge data can be fed without interruption,” the researchers said.
“Such studies have propelled research into pharmacogenomics and genotyping for drug discovery. This has led to the development of personalized medicine as traditional medications are increasingly causing more side effects in humans.”
AI will also play an important role in drug discovery and drug repurposing as pharmaceutical manufacturers and researchers seek to tackle rare diseases and create new opportunities to harness the power of orphan drugs.
Artificial intelligence tools will support the growth of the overall healthcare IT market, which includes analytics applications, electronic health records, and patient engagement technologies, added Verified Market Intelligence.
The broader healthcare IT market is anticipated to increase in value from $134.1 billion in 2016 to $482.98 billion in 2025, representing a 15.3 percent CAGR.
Companies identified as major players in the healthcare IT market, such as Optum, Epic Systems, Allscripts, athenahealth, and McKesson, are actively exploring the potential for artificial intelligence to enhance workflows, streamline processes, and offer more meaningful insights for the delivery of patient care.
The integration of artificial intelligence into the health IT landscape may also create challenges, however. As health IT developers work to meet the growing demand for insights, they will need to solve issues of data aggregation and integration.
This may become problematic as data sources proliferate, especially on the consumer side. Consumers are eagerly embracing the notion of tracking their personal health data through wearable devices, and are increasingly expecting that data to support clinical decisions on their behalf.
The wearable computing market is seeing sustained growth, says Market Research Engine. The company expects that vendors will sell more than $40 billion in wearables by 2024, with many of these devices focused on fitness, wellness, and health.
Companies like Apple and Fitbit, who target their trackers to health-conscious consumers, will continue to lead the global market, the report predicts, challenging health IT vendors and healthcare providers to explore new strategies for integrating wearable data into the patient experience.
Artificial intelligence is already baked in to most wearable devices, which may ease the integration of the popular consumer gadgets into the medical big data analytics environment.
As the markets for medical AI, computer vision, wearable devices, data management tools, and deep learning grow in tandem, healthcare organizations have significant opportunities to develop AI-driven ecosystems for care delivery.
Organizations will need to identify their analytics goals and carefully assess their existing data assets before diving into the artificial intelligence environment in order to make wise investments and avoid creating new data siloes.
With billions of dollars on the line for vendors and consumers of medical AI technologies, organizations should thoroughly investigate their options when exploring applications for AI in the care environment and ensure their vendors can offer strategies and tools that truly meet their needs.