HomeHealthBiden warns AI could 'overtake human thinking' – and other health news...

Biden warns AI could ‘overtake human thinking’ – and other health news this week

“Some are very concerned that AI could actually overtake human thinking and planning,” President Biden said during a speech on Thursday.

From racial bias in medicine to more accessible drugs for Alzheimer’s disease, here are the health stories you might have missed this week from Yahoo News partners.

Biden warns that AI can surpass human thinking

Speaking at the Air Force Academy in Colorado Springs, Colorado, President Biden said Thursday that he had been warned by experts that artificial intelligence could “overtake human thinking.” USA Today reported that this was the president’s “most direct warning yet” about the power of AI technology.

“These won’t be easy decisions, guys,” Biden said. “I met in the Oval Office with eight leading scientists in the field of AI. Some are very concerned that AI could actually overtake human thinking and planning. So we have a lot to deal with. An incredible opportunity, but a lot [to] deal with it.”

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The president’s comments come days after hundreds of AI leaders, as well as other public figures, issued a statement saying that “mitigating the risk of AI extinction must be a global priority, alongside other societal-scale risks , such as pandemics and nuclear war. ”

Last month, Biden met with the CEOs of AI innovation companies, including Google, Microsoft and OpenAI, in an effort to ensure AI products are safe before they are accessible to the public.

Lung problems in black men are underdiagnosed due to racial bias in testing, study says

An African American technician in blue gloves holds up an x-ray of a human thorax.An African American technician in blue gloves holds up an x-ray of a human thorax.

Due to a widely used algorithm, a study shows, lung problems in black men are often misdiagnosed. (Getty Images)

A study published Thursday states that 40% more black male patients would be diagnosed with breathing problems such as “asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease or lung scarring due to exposure to air pollutants” if the current computer software that supports the diagnosis were changed to eliminate racial bias. to eliminate. , the Associated Press reported.

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Based on data from more than 2,700 black men and 5,700 white men tested by the University of Pennsylvania Health System, researchers looked at a commonly used test that includes a computer-generated report that rates a person’s ability to breathe based on how much and how fast he or she breathes. can inhale and exhale. The report was created by algorithms that adjust for race, which “raises the threshold for diagnosing a problem in black patients,” according to the Associated Press. When comparing the race-based algorithm with a new algorithm, researchers found that nearly 400 additional cases of lung obstruction or damage would occur in black men if the new algorithm were used.

The American Thoracic Society, which represents pulmonologists, has recommended that race and ethnicity should no longer be a factor in interpreting test results, but also called for more research to prevent changes that could lead to overdiagnosis of lung problems.

Medicare plans to pay for Alzheimer’s drugs that are approved by the FDA

A young woman in a ponytail walks with one arm around an older woman.A young woman in a ponytail walks with one arm around an older woman.

“Alzheimer’s disease takes a toll not only on those who suffer from the disease, but also on their loved ones and caregivers in a way that almost no other disease does,” said CMS Administrator Chiquita Brooks-LaSure. (Getty Images)

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) will now pay for new Alzheimer’s disease drugs that have received full approval from the Food and Drug Administration, the agency said Thursday, provided doctors prescribing the drugs use a government registry to track patient progress and assess “how these drugs work in the real world.”

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NBC News reported that until now, Medicare would only pay for drugs if patients participated in a clinical trial. This new development will likely allow more patients to afford medications that can slow the progression of the disease.

“Alzheimer’s disease takes a toll not only on those who suffer from the disease, but also on their loved ones and caregivers in a way that almost no other disease does,” said CMS Administrator Chiquita Brooks-LaSure. “CMS has always been committed to helping people get timely access to innovative treatments that meaningfully improve care and outcomes for this disease.”

The winter saw a spike in rare childhood brain infections, CDC reports

Hospitals reported the highest number of brain infections in children in years last winter.  (Getty Images)Hospitals reported the highest number of brain infections in children in years last winter.  (Getty Images)

Hospitals reported the highest number of brain infections in children in years last winter. (Getty Images)

A report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released this week found that while still very rare, hospitals reported the highest number of brain infections in children in years last winter.

CBS News reported that the CDC began investigating a potential increase in “pediatric intracranial infections” after doctors reported an increase in hospitalizations, with many children infected with the bacteria Streptococcus. Most Streptococcus infections lead to benign illnesses such as strep throat, but in rare cases they can develop into worrisome symptoms, “such as seizures and changes in mental status.”

This past winter, there were 102 cases in December, surpassing the previous peak of 61 cases during the 2016-2017 winter season.

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