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In Journal of medical Internet research ; h5-index 88.0

BACKGROUND : Considerable research is being conducted as to how artificial intelligence (AI) can be effectively applied to healthcare. However, for it to be successful, large amounts of health data are required for the training and testing of algorithms. As such, there is a need to understand the perspectives and viewpoints of patients regarding the use of their health data in AI research.

OBJECTIVE : To survey a large sample of patients to identify current awareness of health data research, opinions and views on data sharing for the purposes of AI research, and viewpoints on the use of AI technology on healthcare data.

METHODS : A cross-sectional survey with patients was conducted at a large multi-site teaching hospital in the United Kingdom. Data were collected on patient and public views about sharing health data for research and the use of AI on health data.

RESULTS : A total of 408 participants completed the survey. Respondents had low levels of prior knowledge of AI in general. Most were comfortable with sharing health data with the NHS (77.9%) or universities (65.7%), but far fewer with commercial organisations such as technology companies (26.4%). The majority endorsed AI research on healthcare data (87.4%) and healthcare imaging (86.4%) in a university setting, providing that concerns about privacy, re-identification of anonymised health care data and consent processes were addressed.

CONCLUSIONS : There is significant variation in patient perception, levels of support, and understanding of health data research and AI. There is a need for greater public engagement and debate to ensure the acceptability of AI research and its successful integration into clinical practice in the future.


Aggarwal Ravi, Farag Soma, Martin Guy, Ashrafian Hutan, Darzi Ara