Tom Lawry, the national director for artificial intelligence of health and life sciences at Microsoft, has recently published this very substantive and yet concise book on artificial intelligence in health for any stakeholder interested in this domain.

His wisdom as a long time executive and technologist in health care is obvious in these pages, and this primer reads like a knowledgeable friend talking to you about enigmatic topics in AI in healthcare over a cup of coffee. While he is an ardent AI advocate, the topics are discussed with fairness and reviewed in depth.

This book is full of helpful short lists and discussions that are not typically found in other books in this area and is useful for everyone from the hospital executive to the data scientist as well as the clinician or the entrepreneur. My favorite part of the book is the collection of case studies that are extremely illustrative of the concepts delineated in the chapters.

The very timely topics/chapters that are relevant to understand in this imbroglio of AI in healthcare include: Creating Value Today with AI; Engaging Your Clinicians; Understanding and Managing the Ethics of AI; and the chapter From Aspiration to Execution is particularly insightful. The final prescient chapter titled The Road Ahead for AI is particularly useful for any leader in healthcare and covered topics such as quantum computing, emotional and conversational AI, brain-computer interfaces, augmented reality, and even the importance of global health. My only minor constructive criticism is that there is a paucity of figures and graphs in the book that would help to visualize some of the more difficult topics.

Overall, this is a very readable and useful introductory volume for everyone, and the aforementioned quote is especially valuable to keep in mind in this COVID-19 chaotic world.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Tom Lawry serves as Director of Worldwide Health for Microsoft. In this role he works with providers and life science organizations in planning and implementing innovative analytical solutions that improve the quality and efficiency of health services delivered around the globe.

He focuses on strategies for digital transformation applied to performance optimization including artificial intelligence (AI), machine learning (ML) and Natural Language Processing (NLP). He previously served as Director of Organizational Performance for Microsoft’s health incubator (Health Solutions Group).

Prior to Microsoft Tom served as a Senior Director at GE Healthcare with global responsibilities for revenue cycle management analytics and operational performance solutions.

Lawry was founder and CEO of Verus, a U.S.-based healthcare software company named as one of the Top 100 Fastest Growing Washington Companies for three consecutive years and to the Deloitte Fast 500 Technologies list.

For fourteen years Lawry served in various executive management roles in hospitals and integrated delivery networks in the United States and has published over 30 articles on topics relating to use technology and software to innovate healthcare.