House Energy and Commerce Committee Held Hearing on Artificial Intelligence (AI) in Health Care

  • by AGD Washington Advocacy Representative
  • Dec 7, 2023
On November 29, 2023, the House Committee on Energy and Commerce Health Subcommittee held a hearing entitled, Understanding How AI is Changing Health Care. Witnesses included representatives from hospitals, health care companies, and medical schools. 

The hearing was bipartisan, with members on both sides recognizing the vast potential of artificial intelligence (AI) to improve health care and the need for thoughtful regulations. Republicans and Democrats also expressed concerns about data privacy and security, while recognizing how critical data is to train accurate and effective AI tools. Members highlighted the balance of regulating AI while continuing to spur innovations in the space. Many Member questions focused on the potential for AI to reduce administrative burdens, therefore increasing the time clinicians are able to spend with patients. Democrats expressed worries about the potential of AI tools to replicate human biases that could further drive health inequities.

Witnesses highlighted the AI tools used in health systems, such as those used to assist with nurse handoffs that help physicians read cancer screenings. Witnesses also touted the opportunities of AI to reduce administrative burdens, strengthen diagnostic capabilities, and increase access to care. Witnesses urged federal regulations, namely reimbursement methodologies from CMS, to keep up with the rapid growth and development of AI tools in health care. Witnesses also emphasized that AI tools have not and will not replace clinicians, but rather, are being used as tools to assist clinicians in their practice. 

Impact on General Dentistry: The hearing highlighted the vast potential of AI to broadly improve the health care system, including improving imaging technologies, creating better diagnostic tools, and reducing administrative burdens. When creating guardrails in the space, lawmakers and regulators will have to thoughtfully balance data privacy and security concerns with continuing to promote innovation in AI.