September 13, 2019

2019 Xavier University AI Summit Reflections – Two Industries Ready for Change

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Now that the dust has settled from the Xavier University AI Summit and our team is back to business, we’ve had time to process some of the highlights and key takeaways from the exciting event.  In the past few years, there has been a significant increase in the implementation of digital technologies into various industries that subsequently impacted the way we live, travel, and do business.  From driverless cars to 24/7 customer support chatbots, innovation and technology continue to spiral upward and as we’ve entered the 4th industrial revolution, and healthcare + biopharma should be no exception.  The Xavier University AI Summit is a great event that brings together a range of relevant stakeholders with common focus on artificial intelligence (AI). Together we address the challenges of AI, share initiatives and success stories, and ultimately get a pulse check on where the pharmaceutical and medical device industries are regarding the use of AI.

  • As a first take, this year’s attendee list included the expected top healthcare companies in addition to leading technology companies, like AWS.  The engagement of these tech companies coming from outside of the healthcare industry is a true testament to the major paradigm shift the industry is going through nowadays.  From FDA presentations on the exploration of the power of AI to fireside chats on discovery and innovation, there was an underlying message throughout the summit – the industry needs the pharma 4.0 technologies.  To those who may not have a clear understanding of what we mean by pharma 4.0, check out our blog post where we bring more color to the new wave of disruptive technologies.
  • Secondly, this summit’s focus was on AI and the benefits it can bring to an industry that is known to lack in innovative technologies due to strong regulation. The message was clear – it is almost irresponsible not to pursue the advantages offered by AI, to help deserving patients get better treatments and therapies.  AI is the combination of statistics, software, and computation to provide predictions, recommendations, classifications and patterns in a similar way than humans do. The benefits of AI are new and novel, from improving drug discovery to manufacturing drugs faster to reducing drug development costs.  On average, 9/10 clinical drugs fail to make it trail costing companies around $1.2 billion to develop new drugs. Adoption to AI can elevate pressures from pharma companies, decreasing the amount of money spent on creating drugs and bringing them to market sooner.  There are countless benefits that other industries have experienced using digital technologies like AI and now it is time to establish the right procedures for our industry.
  • Lastly, there was a clear joined effort between pharmaceutical and medical device industries to establish a roadmap on how to implement AI into the health sector.  FDA regulators at the event also provided their strong support to achieve AI implementation to bring the power of AI to the benefit of patients. As we’ve shared previously, the FDA has continued to work towards understanding new digital technologies creating programs like the ETT program.  AI benefits are expanding in various other sectors with industry leaders of tomorrow adapting and embracing new technology which has proven to be as beneficial inside our society today. The path to apply the same outcome in pharmaceutical and the medical device industry only requires to include the same science applied to the processes and products that are being carried in companies today.

As we look to the future of the pharmaceutical and medical device, the power of AI will shape the future of our industry.  Thanks in no small part to the initiatives from the AI Xavier Health University!