The key advantages of using chatbots in healthcare include:
Better Health Monitoring
Since the process of recovery depends not only on the doctor’s competency but also on how a patient acts on medical advice, chatbots can help in providing better patient monitoring. For example, they can serve as reminders of taking prescribed medicine, undergoing medical procedures, and arranging timely appointments.
Quick Access to Crucial Data
If a chatbot used within a medical organization is in charge of keeping records, doctors can quickly access patient’s data, diminishing time spent by corresponding employees on getting the same work done.
Increased Patient Trust
Being free from a human factor, chatbots are ideal for helping patients in choosing the right healthcare provider, showing the most conveniently located hospitals, and even providing information on its workers. All this information becomes available to a patient without any searches, but simply in the convenience of a mobile app.
With chatbots, it becomes easier for both doctors and their patients to plan appointments.
Chatbots are extremely helpful in providing patients with different information, including answers to simple questions and some minor recommendations that previously would require a patient to visit a doctor or make a call to a hospital.
Considering the fact the development of chatbot-featuring applications is a comparatively new option, there are plenty of other benefits we could expect in the future. As for now, the technology is not perfect and has some significant disadvantages.
Many would ask: if chatbots are so good, why aren’t they used as an alternative to visiting doctors? And the answer is — because health issues always require much attention to emotions and this is where chatbots fail.
Yes, the technology learns from the surrounding world, but in its current state, it is too far from reading emotions and acting accordingly to the received information. In other words, chatbots don’t show empathy, at least for now.
Nevertheless, SRI International takes steps to make conversations with digital assistants more human-like. So someday, and probably this day is not so far from now, chatbots will learn how to translate the emotional background of human conversations.
Why Chatbots are Better than Symptom Checks and Google Search?
Even though the chatbot technology is imperfect, it already shows its promising potential, especially when compared to symptom checking websites and a fellow Google search.
Chatbots vs Google Search
Chatbots beat Google search in terms of providing correct information and offering more convenience in use. When a patient searches for something on the web, there are always chances to find some fake or promotional information, while a chatbot gradually taught by physicians is more likely to provide relevant answers.
Chatbots vs Symptom Checking Websites
When it comes to comparing chatbots with symptoms checking websites, the first beat the latter with more personalized answers.
Nevertheless, chatbots are not created equal. Some of them are quite useful, while some give nothing but disappointment.
What Does it Take to Build a Chatbot?
Chatbot development is a complicated process that requires:
Information Source Integration
The main source of learning for a chatbot.
Natural Language Processing
It allows a chatbot to understand human-generated language and enables the user to talk to a chatbot with voice.
Natural Language Generation
It contributes to human-like conversations with a chatbot, allowing it to generate logical sentences, ask additional questions, and provide relevant answers.
Enables digital health assistant to recognize body deviations and, as a result, provide better recommendations.
It allows collecting feedbacks and in this way promotes better decision-making.
Allow receiving information on a patient’s health status from wearables to analyze it and generate personalized recommendations.
Although the list is not complete and there are always some additional issues arising from the project requirements, paying attention to these points is important when developing a quality digital health assistant.
Having more than 20 years of experience in delivering solutions for the healthcare industry, and completed projects featuring chatbots, we will be happy to answer all of your questions concerning the development of a digital health assistant. Feel free to contact us, and thank you for reading.