iFlytek Doctor Robot First To Pass Medical Exams

A medical robot created by Chinese artificial intelligence company iFlytek is the first to pass China's national medical licensing examination. The robot scored 456 points, 96 points higher than the required marks.

(iFlytek's AI-enabled robot sits the test of China's national medical licensing examination)

The artificial-intelligence-enabled robot can automatically capture and analyze patient information and make initial diagnosis. It will be used to assist doctors to improve efficiency in future treatments, iFlytek said.

Liu Qingfeng, chairman of iFlytek, said, "We will officially launch the robot in March 2018. It is not meant to replace doctors. Instead, it is to promote better people-machine cooperation so as to boost efficiency."

Unlike the United States tech company IBM's AI-enabled Watson system, which only focuses on the treatment of cancer and major diseases, iFlytek is stepping up push to explore how to use AI to both cure cancer and train general practitioners.

"General practitioners are in severe shortage in China's rural areas. We hope AI can help more people access quality medical resources."

Science fiction fans have been simultaneously looking forward to and dreading the possibility of encountering a robot doctor. I recall most clearly the 2-1B medical droid at the end of the 1980 classic Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back:

(2-1B medical droid from Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back)

Consider also the autodoc from Larry Niven's 1970 novel Ringworld, which treats patients as well as examining and diagnosing their illnesses.

It's a bit more limited, but the electronic body analyzer from Michael Crichton's 1969 novel The Andromeda Strain does a pretty good job with a physical exam.

Via ChinaDaily.

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