Episode #178 Is AI the transformational catalyst we’ve been waiting for? – with Robert Pearl, MD, former CEO of Kaiser Permanente

Dr. Robert Pearl has recently published a 3rd book entitled ‘ChatGPT MD’. His ‘co-author’, as he calls it, was ChatGPT itself. With this book, Robbie brings his unique perspectives as a practicing surgeon, an accomplished CEO, an author of numerous publications and books, a Stanford Graduate Business School and Medical School Professor, and one of the most forward-thinking healthcare leaders in the country.

In this interview we’ll discuss the numerous potential benefits of AI in healthcare, including some real-life illustrations of how AI is already saving lives and limbs. Beyond these illustrations, we discuss a number of critically important take-home messages for the medical community and healthcare leadership. These include:

  • Generative AI is markedly different from other forms of AI.
  • While generative AI may not be ready for prime time clinical care, it is ready for rapid and immediate experimentation and study.
  • Generative AI is improving at an unprecedented rate, so we should focus on its future capabilities and reliability, and not just on what it can do today.
  • Why we should think of generative AI as an assistant rather than a tool.
  • Generative AI has the potential – if we study and deploy it well – to be the transformative catalyst that we’ve been waiting for.

Robbie’s major point is this –  let’s not let fear, hubris or inertia get in the way of what may be the most impactful transformation ever to hit healthcare. And instead of waiting, let’s all jump in by trying it and testing it out. As usual, Dr. Pearl is embodying his own advice. In ‘co-authoring’ a book with this technology, he is setting an example for the rest of us.

If you’re interested in learning more about Dr. Pearl’s work, please check out his website and his most recent book, ChatGPTMD.