Among the diseases to have caused severe damage to the human race over the years, cancer has been the one that has caused the most pain and heartache. A mention of cancer can bring the world to a sudden halt, their minds riddled with fear and despair due to the effects of this cruel disease. In spite of the significant progress made in the fields of medical science and technology and the constant evolution of the space, there is still no guaranteed cure for cancer.
An abundance of capital has been invested in the search for a cure for this disease. There are numerous foundations that are collecting donations for the cause.
Google has recently stated that its Artificial Intelligence has the ability to predict when a person will die with an accuracy of upto 95%.
If it is possible for an AI program to predict the unseen, why is it not possible for it to find a cure for cancer, the disease that leads to over 9 million deaths annually?
AI is an algorithm that makes use of the available data to identify patterns and to develop an understanding and educate itself from them. To discover a cure for cancer, AI would need information from the cancer databases of all hospitals on which it would run calculations. It would be a large scale attempt to find a cure for cancer. The obvious question that arises at this point is: Why isn’t this already being done?
The answer is because of the doctor-patient confidentiality clause as well as the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) and other acts like this. These acts prevent hospitals from releasing private data of their patients and this leads to a massive lack of data for AI programs.
How do we connect AI to the pool of hospitals’ cancer databases?
The answer to this question is Blockchain, a decentralized and distributed ledger technology. Blockchain technology is revolutionizing the way healthcare as an industry works. It is different from centralized information pools in that data can be shared on Blockchain while keeping the personal details of the patient completely anonymous. This will respect the doctor-patient confidentiality clause as well as acts like HIPAA. AI can then proceed to access the information from al hospitals and identify different patterns of how cancer is caused, how it works and how it can be effectively treated and possibly cured.
The Pharma industry will be greatly helped with this combination of Blockchain and AI. Providing access to use patient databases will allow AI to discover more effective treatment programmes for many different diseases including cancer. Blockchain working in tandem with AI as well as the Pharma and healthcare industries will make it possible for us to make incredible, game-changing breakthroughs.