AI MED: Should your healthcare organisation use Amazon Web Services for artificial intelligence?

John Davies, Healthcare Lead, Public Sector, Amazon Web Services: Davies Artificial intelligence (AI) is gaining momentum in the healthcare industry and most applications over time will have some form of machine learning AI infused in them. Today, if you look at AI usage, it’s still relatively early days, but virtually every organization is interested in it.

The way we think about AI at a high level is there are three levels of the stack. That lowest level is for the expert machine learning practitioners. They’re the ones who know how to build deep learning models, tune them, and do inference. It’s a lot of hard work, and the vast majority of machine learning being done in the cloud today is on AWS.

But if you really want machine learning to explode in terms of usage, it needs to be more accessible to everyday developers. Very few organizations have those expert machine learning practitioners. If you can’t make everyday developers successful with machine learning, it won’t expand the way we all believe it will.

Today, everybody’s got offerings at the middle layer of the stack, for everyday developers, but they’re all a little bit too hard to allow it to expand the way it will. That’s another area of focus for us and in 2017 we launched Amazon SageMaker, which makes advanced AI solutions accessible to any developer, for example in healthcare and medical imaging we see it being used for things like disease prediction, such as how likely are to have congestive heart failure or being used for early-stage lung cancer detection.

In the US, two Stanford University students have used AWS to quickly and cost-effectively identify theprecursors to blindness caused by diabetic retinopathy. They imported more than 80,000 eye images, using AWS to manage, crunch, and review the many gigabytes of data and in just two days, they were able to train a new model from scratch, trying new models over and over, based on advice and insights from ophthalmologists, improving diagnostic accuracy to expert human-level.

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john davies aws healthcare cloud artificial intelligence medicine computingJohn Davies, Healthcare Lead, Public Sector, Amazon Web Services,

John Davies leads the UK&I Healthcare team at Amazon Web Services. He and his team work with both NHS Trusts and Private Sector Healthcare organisations to help unlock digital innovation. He is especially passionate about the opportunities that AI and Cloud computing at scale can bring to improved health outcomes. 

John has over 20 years’ experience in the Healthcare IT industry. Prior to joining AWS, he led a systems engineering team for a global hardware technology vendor, focused on the creation of healthcare solutions. He was also a Senior Development Manager in the NHS for several years.