MedTech: Emotional intelligence vs artificial intelligence

29 Jun, 2020 - BCB

Recent times have seen mind-boggling advancements in the MedTech sector, be it the integration of AI or robotic automation of complex medical procedures. However, a recent news article drew my attention to the fact that technology isn’t always about replacing our work but could actually be complementary to that much needed ‘personal touch’ that’s such an important part of healthcare.

The UAE’s federal Department of Health recognised early on that the psychological wellbeing of a patient directly impacts their physical condition and eventual recovery. With this principle in place, Al Ain Hospital has introduced technology-led services that now allow coronavirus patients to communicate with their relatives to boost morale during treatment. The hospital has also set up a dedicated room outside the inpatient department that hosts a large screen that allows one family member to video call their relative undergoing treatment.

Not only does this provide patients with a large motivational boost, it also allows the medical teams to focus solely on the patients’ physical wellbeing. The management has witnessed immediate results with patients, especially in the intensive care units, responding well to their treatment leading to better recovery rates.

At the core of it, every technological advancement is developed to ensure fast and efficient recovery of a patient.  As elementary as this may seem, it is a reminder to UK companies that no matter how much artificial intelligence or automation takes over, nothing will replace the psychological benefit a patient receives from the interaction with a loved one.

UK health tech firms as well as start-ups operating in this space will do well to consider this for their plans for entering the Middle East region. The UAE government’s emphasis on the mental wellness of a patient and its drive to roll out the most sophisticated technologies in health care across the country is a real market opportunity.