Chatbots: Transforming Healthcare?

4 min read

Close up of someone texting with a chatbot with a background of a coffee.

From customer service and e-commerce to banking, chatbots are being used in a wide range of industries to improve efficiency, reduce costs, and enhance customer experience.

Chatbots, or conversational agents, are no longer just a futuristic concept – they are already here, revolutionizing the way businesses and individuals interact with technology.

In this article, we will cover what are chatbots, how they are being used for modern operations and their evolving impact on the healthcare industry.

Chatbots are artificial intelligence programs

Depending on the level of sophistication required for their intended purpose, chatbots can simulate conversations with users. They can be simple or complex. Some rely on pre-programmed responses, while others are designed to learn and adapt over time their responses based on user interactions.

Overall, they help users with various tasks and answer their queries in a conversational manner.

They generate personalized interactions

With their 24/7 availability and ability to handle multiple user interactions simultaneously, those conversational agents can be integrated into various communication channels such as social media platforms and websites allowing businesses to reach their customers where they are. Businesses can save time and money on customer service and support, while also providing a better user experience.

By analyzing customer data and interactions, chatbots can also provide tailored recommendations and promotions to customers. They can assist with completing transactions, such as booking a hotel room or ordering food.

All in all, chatbots are used by companies to manage customer service and collect data to generate personalized recommendations for their customers.

They improve patient care and healthcare process

Here are a few examples of how chatbots are being used in the healthcare industry:

  • Appointment scheduling
    To help patients schedule appointments with their healthcare providers. Patients can ask the chatbot for available dates and times and receive an appointment confirmation.

  • Health education
    To provide patients with information on various health topics such as disease prevention. It helps patients make more informed decisions about their health.

  • Medication reminders
    To send reminders to patients on taking their medication on time. It helps patients improve their medication adherence and reduce the risk of complications.

  • Symptom assessment
    To help patients assess their symptoms and provide them with recommendations on whether to seek medical attention or treat the symptoms at home.

  • Mental health support
    To provide patients with moral support when dealing with stress, anxiety, and depression by offering coping strategies.

Chatbots could assist healthcare professionals in managing their patient’s health.

While chatbots cannot replace the expertise of healthcare professionals, they could assist patients in managing their health by providing continuous support and timely responses.

With the ability to handle complex questions and offer personalized recommendations, chatbots can be a valuable asset for healthcare professionals. For instance, they can be used to provide immediate assistance to patients with mental health issues, such as depression, stress, or substance dependence.

By recommending chatbots that have been programmed with responses derived from science-based interventions such as cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT), healthcare professionals can offer their patients a more convenient and effective way to receive support.

Let's take a look at some chatbot health apps

The Mindfulness AI

Wysa is an AI chatbot that serves as a mindfulness coach, anxiety helper, and mood tracker, helping users improve their mental health through daily spiritual meditation and calming audio. Its therapy-based conversations help users cope with mental disorders, manage stress, and boost mental health.

apple is available for this applicationandroid is available for this application
In-app purchases

Personal CBT Coach

Woebot is a chatbot app that helps people with depression by providing step-by-step guidance based on CBT. It can also assist with other mental health conditions such as stress and anxiety, substance use, and sleep problems.

apple is available for this applicationandroid is available for this application

Virtual Breast Cancer Companion

Vik Sein is a virtual companion answering all kinds of questions about breast cancer. It assists users in monitoring their symptoms, reminding them to take their medications, and keeping track of their medical appointments.

application icon
Vik Sein
android is available for this application

The Emotional Manager

Youper is a self-guided therapy app that uses CBT techniques to help people reduce their anxiety and manage their emotions. Based on users' input, Youper will ask questions, learn what works for them, and create a personalized strategy to help them understand and change their thoughts and feelings.

apple is available for this applicationandroid is available for this application
In-app purchases

Revolutionizing Healthcare: The Promising Future of Chatbots

What started as a basic way to answer customers' frequently asked questions has now evolved into a sophisticated tool that can provide personalized health advice, monitor patient conditions, and provide mental health support.

To assess the evolving impact of chatbots and evaluate their role in supporting patient healthcare, you can experiment by using one of the selected apps.

Whether it's providing patients with round-the-clock care or helping doctors with real-time information, the evolving role of chatbots in the healthcare industry is undoubtedly a promising development that we should all keep an eye on.

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