Sunday, 27 September 2020

Microsoft invests $40M to initiate ‘AI for Health’

30 January 2020 | News

The new initiative will use AI to advance the health of people and communities around the world

image credit: governmentciomedia

image credit: governmentciomedia

The health of people and communities around the world has been improving over time. For example, the steep decline in child and maternal mortality is a key indicator of positive momentum. However, progress has not been equal across the globe, and there is a great need to focus on societal issues such as reducing health inequity and improving access to care for underserved populations. While researchers work to unlock life-saving discoveries and develop new approaches to pressing health issues, advancements in technology can help accelerate and scale new solutions.

That is why Microsoft is launching AI for Health, a new $40 million, five-year program to empower researchers and organizations with AI to improve the health of people and communities around the world. The program is underpinned with a strong foundation of privacy, security and ethics, and was developed in collaboration with leading health experts who are driving important medical initiatives. AI for Health is the fifth Microsoft AI for Good program, a $165 million initiative to empower researchers, nonprofits and organizations with advanced technologies to help unlock solutions to the biggest challenges facing society today.

The AI for Health initiative will focus on three key areas:

  • Quest for discovery. Accelerating medical research to advance prevention, diagnoses and treatment of diseases
  • Global health insights. Increasing our shared understanding of mortality and longevity to protect against global health crises
  • Health equity. Reducing health inequity and improving access to care for underserved populations

“AI for Health is a philanthropic initiative that complements our broader work in Microsoft Healthcare,” wrote Microsoft’s John Kahan, Chief Data Analytics Officer in a blog post announcing the new program. “We will support specific nonprofits and academic collaboration with Microsoft’s leading data scientists, access to best-in-class AI tools and cloud computing, and select cash grants.”

John Kahan said in statement that, “I am honored to lead AI for Health as part of my mission at Microsoft to fuse AI and data to address the world’s greatest challenges. As a tech company, it is our responsibility to ensure that organizations working on the most pressing societal issues have access to our latest AI technology and the expertise of our technical talent.”

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