Artificial intelligence being used at Omaha’s CHI Health clinics

One Omaha hospital system is using artificial intelligence to better healthcare services for patients.
Published: Apr. 20, 2023 at 10:29 PM CDT
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OMAHA, Neb. (WOWT) - The types of AI that healthcare providers at CHI Health use are the kind patients rarely see.

“This is all done to help the providers and the nurses, and it informs them,” said Dr. Steven Leitch, vice president of clinical informatics for CHI Health. “They make the decision. The decision is made by our staff.”

CHI Health uses three main types of AI programs, the latest being implemented just four months ago called the “patient no-show model.”

“If a patient frequently doesn’t show up for their appointment, they’re less likely to get the care they need,” Leitch said. “And if we can predict that and contact them ahead of time and maybe even identify barriers to coming into the clinic, we can get them in and provide the care they need so they’re less likely to get critically ill, get sick, and back in the hospital.”

The no-show model is currently in use across four Nebraska clinics to flag patients that may miss appointments. They plan to eventually roll it out for thousands of other patients.

The other two AI tools help identify serious sepsis risk, which was refined in 2021; and with stroke detection, using AI in imaging.

“I don’t think there’s anything to fear about this,” Leitch said. “This will help your providers and your medical staff do a better job for you. It’ll help inform them and it will actually reduce their burden so they can spend more time with you.”

Tools like ChatGPT take Googling your symptoms to the next level -- but Leitch says to use it with caution.

“The more patients know is fine. If they come in and have questions, we can sort through that,” he said. “I think the real risk is if they decide to take action based on that because you’ve got to realize none of these machines have approached the capacity of the human brain.”

He says AI will be used even more as researchers expand the computing capacity.