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A.I. taking notes for UPMC doctors

Artificial Intelligence is changing healthcare across the country. UPMC is among the first to use the new technology in doctor-patient interactions.

HARRISBURG, Pa. — Doctors see thousands of patients every year and every conversation is critical.

The notes they take are just as important.

"A majority of our time is spent in documentation, working on computers, charting notes," said Dr. Salim Saiyed, UPMC's chief medical information officer for Central Pennsylvania. "Sometimes we'll miss things and sometimes the scribbles are very legible."

That's why Dr. Saiyed and his team at UPMC are among the first in the nation to use Artificial Intelligence to streamline the note-taking process.

"There's a lot of excitement around it because of clinician burnout, staff recruitment and really trying to automate," he said. 

Dr. Saiyed walked FOX43 through the program during a simulated routine checkup, with A.I. listening in.

UPMC uses Abridge A.I. software. Doctors set up a recording on their phones and continue as normal.

"Using A.I., it actually captures the note. It captures the conversation real-time and then it also records it so we can always go back to the recording," Dr. Saiyed said.

Abridge uses that audio to summarize the conversation, noting symptoms, medications, and the plan of action.

Doctors can review a full transcript from each visit and adjust the report before it's filed away in the digital medical records system.

"We're not just talking about theories or talking about small pilots. This is real, we're doing it at scale," Saiyed said. "It's saving hours for our physicians. It's not just the time saved, but also really making our documentation more accurate."

About a dozen UMPC facilities are already using this technology -- improving doctor-patient interactions at the touch of a button.

Download the FOX43 app.

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