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July 05, 2019 Friday 02:58:16 PM IST

Techies trust digital doctors

Teacher Insights

Would you trust a robot to diagnose your cancer? According to researchers at Penn State, people with high confidence in machine performance and also in their own technological capabilities are more likely to use digital healthcare services.

Doctors are limited by their human bandwidth, by their experience, knowledge and even state of mind. In contrast, machines could be programmed to 'think' of all the possible conditions that a patient's symptoms could point to, and they never get tired.  The healthcare industry can benefit from increased reliance on automated systems.

Researchers initiated online chat interactions to test the participants' acceptance of those healthcare providers and their intentions to use those providers in the future. Study found people who had high adherence to the machine heuristic (a machine heuristic involves stereotypes people have about machines, including their beliefs in machines' infallibility, objectivity and efficiency) had positive attitudes toward all forms of digital healthcare provider, regardless of whether they were human-like or a robot.


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