AI Technology Makes Ping An Good Doctor’s ‘One Minute Clinic’ the Most Popular ‘New Invention’ at PharmChina
Getting a doctor’s diagnosis and prescription remotely sounds like fantasy, but it became reality at the 79th PharmChina.
On April 11, Ping An Good Doctor, a leader in the Chinese health-tech market, revealed the ‘One Minute Clinic’ at PharmChina. Visitors were glued to the dazzling multifunctional demo and a long line quickly queued up for visitors to get their own ‘online consultation’ experience at the booth.
Reportedly, this year PharmChina steered away from traditional booths and displays to focus on high-tech ‘new-age health and medical’ products and services such as Internet+ pharmaceutical, medical, and health services. As the leader in China’s AI medical sector, Ping An Good Doctor made a memorable showing.
The AI Technology behind the ‘One Minute Clinic’
‘This vending machine looks like a shipping crate, but not only can I get medical advice, I can also directly pay for medication. Before I had to spend an entire day waiting in line to see a doctor even for something like a cold, now I’m done in a few minutes. Normal cold medication is available directly from the vending machine, it’s as simple as buying a bottle of water, it’s amazing.’ One visitor marveled after experiencing the ‘One Minute Clinic.’
‘When someone makes an inquiry, the ‘AI doctor’ is the first to respond. After the AI algorithm sorts the patient’s basic condition and symptoms, the system automatically transfer the patient to a corresponding real doctor, and the real doctor makes a diagnosis according to the patient’s symptoms and prescribe medication. The ‘AI doctor’ plays the role of assistant to the real doctor, effectively improving efficiency in responding to inquiries. This is how we were able to achieve rapid responses to inquiries,’ said the Ping An Good Doctor booth staffer.
Context analysis and semantics processing is necessary to achieve intelligent voice medical inquiries. In order to more accurately process the meaning behind patients’ inquiries, Ping An Good Doctor’s AI consulting system underwent extensive testing and debugging. Currently, the system can complete semantics recognition in ordinary daily context.
‘We’ll put a Ping An Good Doctor ‘One Minute Clinic’ wherever there’s people. We want to make visiting the doctor and buying drugs as easy as buying a drink from the vending machine,’ a staffer at the Ping An Good Doctor booth explained. In the future, Ping An Good Doctor’s ‘One Minute Clinic’ will be placed in offices, shopping malls, airports, and other public spaces, providing ‘on-site medical and pharmaceutical services’ around the clock to even more people.
‘From now on, when you start to feel sick at work, you don’t need to take a day off to stand in line in the hospital, just go directly to the ‘One Minute Clinic’ for your online consultation and buy your medicine. You can solve your problem without leaving the office.’ Visitors at the booth couldn’t wait until the incredible Ping An Good Doctor ‘One Minute Clinic’ is rolled out.
Innovation in ‘New Retal + AI Medical Consultation’
Since China made ‘Healthy China’ a national strategy, people have been searching for ways to meet the medical and health services needs of the country’s citizens. During this year’s ‘Two Sessions,’ the government made developing an intelligent medical technology sector a national focus. The State Council successively issued Guidance on Driving Internet+, Directives on How to Promote Health Services, and other policies. The National Health and Family Planning Commission also issued Directives on Promoting Remote Medical Services in Medical Institutions. Combining medical services and AI is the trend for the future.
At the same time, as ‘staff-less retail,’ ‘face recognition payment,’ ‘cross-border e-commerce’ and other new retail channels enter the everyday life of ordinary citizens, the effect of ‘new retail’ on the greater health sector is becoming more pronounced. Ping An Good Doctor’s ‘One Minute Clinic’ will be key to linking the upstream and downstream segments of the medical and pharmaceutical industry chain together, utilizing big data, artificial intelligence, and other advance technology to upgrade and improve pharmaceutical logistics and retail as well as continuously strengthen the online to offline combination of service and experience.
‘In the future, online merchants for pharmaceuticals won’t be limited to retail platforms. They will also need to improve their service up and down the chain including medical services, brand promotion, patient education, electronic prescriptions, pharmaceutical retail, local delivery, and more,’ said Ping An Good Doctor vice president Wang Kun.
Industry insiders say the roll out of the ‘One Minute Clinic’ will help relieve the imbalance between supply and demand in medical services through improving efficiency. It is a grand innovation experiment in the medical and health sector and may not be perfect just yet but should be encouraged.
Data from third party research institution Frost & Sullivan shows that in 2016, including commute and waiting times, patients in China spend roughly 3 hours every time they need to go see a doctor. The true time a patient spends with the doctor is only 8 minutes, or about 4.4% of the total time spent. If the ‘One Minute Clinic’ is successfully popularized and inserted into our daily lives like automatic vending machines, patients will be able to consult their doctor and buy drugs whenever and wherever. Maybe Ping An Good Doctor’s ‘One Minute Clinic’ will be a possible solution to the supply and demand imbalance in medical services.
In fact, since the founding of the company, Ping An Good Doctor has been dedicated to utilizing artificial intelligence, the internet, and mobile technology to drive new development in the medical and health services sector, helping the country move further towards a Healthy China. Aside from releasing the innovating ‘One Minute Clinic,’ in 2018, Ping An Good Doctor also initiated the ‘Subsidize Good Rural Doctors’ plan to help narrow the gap between urban and rural medical services. This is all in an effort to make Ping An Good Doctor’s technology and product innovations truly benefit the people.