May 28, 2020
Coronavirus, the pandemic that originated in Wuhan, China, has infected about 4.8 million people around the world today (May 19/20), as per the latest records by John Hopkins Coronavirus Resource Center. It has become a dystopian reality of our lives. With global medical systems stocking up their medical supplies and countries extending the lockdown, finding a cure to this deadly virus has become a buzzword in no time. Countries like Italy, the US, Spain, and Russia remain amongst the worst-hit nations and are constantly working on finding ways to get the cure.
Now while the world continues to fight this ongoing pandemic, technology has come up as the biggest ace-card for mankind in not just curing the people infected, but also in finding the vaccine and curbing the spread of the virus. Taking an example of AI/ML alone, this is a technology that has proven its worth in mitigating the virus to a great extent so far.
So here’s our detailed take on some of the ways in which Artificial Intelligence/Machine Learning can help mitigate the spread of Coronavirus.
Top Ways in Which AI/ML Can Help Mitigate the Spread of Coronavirus
Have a look at the top ways in which AI/ML can help mitigate the virus.
1. Identification of Suitable Vaccines Using Machine Learning
Right since the onset of COVID-19, talks and debates around vaccine development have been an ongoing thing. While some countries continue to claim their potential achievements in vaccine development, any concrete success still seems a distant reality. However, here’s a thing, the integration of Machine Learning in medical science can be one of the key factors in vaccine development.
But before we discuss that, let’s have a little insight into the developments happening around the development of the COVID-19 vaccine.
- Sanofi, the French pharmaceutical giant, has been working on the development of the COVID-19 vaccine that will be made available to the US much before the rest of the world.
- Israel-based TAU has teamed up with Swiss-based biopharmaceutical Neovii for the development of a COVID-19 vaccine.
- Moderna has completed phase-1 of its trial in vaccine development and, as per reports, the results are encouraging.
Now while these are some developments happening around vaccine development, the real question is, how can Machine Learning help in this case?
Well, Machine Learning is a technology that can assist drug developers to quickly analyze the suitable raw materials for the development of COVID-19 vaccine. With the help of ML Models, developers can maneuver through the protein structures and determine their impact on mitigating the virus. In fact, Deargen, a South Korea based company has developed a deep learning model that can identify the compounds to tackle the virus. The model, in fact, has reportedly been able to identify the FDA-approved atazanavir medication to cripple the virus behind Covid-19.
2. Medical Assessment through AI-Powered Chatbots
Chatbots aren’t a new thing in the technological world today. Over the years, AI-powered chatbots have proven their relevance in verticals like customer support, customer engagement, etc. However, the same chatbots are now all set to take a step further.
With their well-renowned proficiencies, chatbots can help healthcare service providers reduce their burden by allowing people to self-assess themselves without any hassle or human contact. This significantly reduces the risk of contracting the virus for either the general public or healthcare workers. By asking a few questions like travel history, type of symptoms, or by taking the body temperature through in-built thermal sensors, chatbots can be breakthrough solutions in not only assessing the public but also saving healthcare workers.
In fact, Apollo, the renowned Indian Hospitals Chain has developed its own chatbot for diagnosing patients in real quick time.
Likewise, the CDC and Microsoft have created a chatbot service to track or assess the symptoms of COVID-19.
3. Machine Learning for Tracking the Spread of Virus
At a time when vaccine development seems a distant project, social distancing and tracking the spread have come up as prominent weapons for local and national authorities around the world in containing the virus. Thermal cameras in countries like South Korea and China have been installed to track and assess the people passing through to determine whether they are infected or not. This has shown tremendous results in China alone.
South Korea, a country that has been the worst affected in Asia after China, launched an app that ensures people maintain social distancing by tracking their whereabouts. The app can immediately identify one person when he/she comes within 2 meters of another person, eventually ensuring social distancing is maintained at all times. What is interesting about such an app is that South Korea isn’t the only country to have developed it.
India, where maintaining social distancing seems a near-impossible dream, has developed an application called Aarogya Setu which is powered by Artificial Intelligence and which tracks COVID-19 infected people who are nearby.
Solutions like these have not only directed iOS developers to embrace a technology like AI in app development, but are also compelling many enterprises choosing Android app development companies around the world today to tee-up in developing more such healthcare apps for tracking the spread of the virus.
4. Installation of AI Systems in Hospitals
Doctors and healthcare workers treating Covid-19 patients have been amongst the highest at risk in this era of COVID-19. In fact, as per the International Council of Nurses, over 90,000 nurses, doctors, and other healthcare workers have been infected by COVID-19 worldwide today.
Hence, the demand for efficient solutions in protecting healthcare workers is higher than ever today. What AI systems can do in this case is to eliminate the contact of healthcare workers with the general public and patients.
These systems being installed in hospitals are now performing more contact-based tasks that would otherwise be done by healthcare experts. In fact, many hospitals are now using AI robots to take medicines to COVID-19 patients, which will eventually eliminate the need for human contact in medicine delivery.
In a Nutshell
While countries continue to battle the outbreak of COVID-19 and social distancing continues to be the name of the game, one thing is certain, the impact of Coronavirus on businesses around the world has been staggering. Now with that being a fact, the innovations happening in the technological world of AI/ML have made it possible for us to take a step further in curbing the spread of the virus. What happens next remains to be seen but one thing is a certain fact, AI/ML has mass potential in healthcare for the present and future, and can be an asset in fighting the novel COVID-19.
So, if you have any queries for us or wish to share your thoughts on the role of AI/ML in mitigating COVID-19, feel free to get in touch with us or connect through our social media handles.
Andrea Laura is a very creative writer and active contributor who love to share informative news or updates on various topics and brings great information to her readers. Being writing as her hobby, Andrea has come out with many interesting topics and information that attracts readers to unravel her write-up. Her content is featured on many mainstream sites & blogs.