Who will pay for the AI is not who you think.
If you had to pay for the Google search engine tomorrow, how much would you pay?
And for your e-mail?
What if the air in your tires cost 100 euros instead of 1 euro?
And if the copy of the house key was 500 euros, what would you do?
There are things, some things, whose price does not depend on the willingness to pay.
There are others that do.
An iphone, a hotel or a Mercedes cost exactly the maximum that people want to pay, without diminishing sales.
But there are others that depend on their exclusivity, as is the case with Louis Vuitton.
Others depend simply on their scarcity, as with caviar.
We tend to lump these two groups into the “luxury” category.
And there are some that depend on culture.
On the mindset that has been able to generate around the value of the matter.
People assume to pay enormous amounts for an MRI device, which saves lives.
But they understand that a risk score for thrombosis, which also saves lives, must be free. And if you tried to charge intellectual property for it, you would be accused of being a bad person and an exploitative usurer.
And all this matters to you. In fact it matters a lot to you.
As of today AI algorithms that can predict a clinical event are not paid for by anyone.
That’s why only a fraction of the ones that could be being done are being done.
They are done by a few leading hospitals.
And not much more.
But of course we are getting closer and closer to the moment when people start to realize that whether a patient is treated well or badly will depend as much on these algorithms as on giving the right drug.
And at that point, the balance is going to have to tip one way or the other.
Or the pharmaceutical companies pay for it. Just as they now pay for genetic testing, physician training and research.
Or the health services pay for it. As they now pay for staff, drugs and medical devices.
At the moment, the pharmaceutical companies are winning.
They are currently contracting predictive algorithms for pathologies in which they are interested in positioning themselves.
At the moment, hospitals are asking for them free of charge.
But I wonder how long it will take for this to change.
So that for a Manager, not paying for AI, will cost him his position.
If you want to be part of it. If you want to increase the pressure on the pot, creating and validating more AI with clinical impact, this is it.