Google’s reach into almost all aspects ofpeople’s digital lives – from email and search to maps and calendars – means there isn’t much it doesn’t know about its 1.17 billion users. And now, the technology giant might even know when you’re going to die.

The company’s Medical Brain team is using a new type of artificial intelligence algorithm to make predictions about the likelihood of death among hospital patients.

A paper published last month in the journal Nature detailed how its predictive algorithm used vast data sets to determine whether inpatients will survive in two different hospitals.

In one case study, the Medical Brain algorithm gave a woman with metastatic breast cancer a 19.9% chance of dying in the hospital by crunching 175,639 data points from her medical records.

The hospital’s Early Warning Score that it typically uses gave her a 9.3% chance of dying. Within two weeks the patient was dead.

Google is one of many companies trying to apply AI technology to solve some of the problems faced by the health-care sector.

According to Bloomberg, Google’s tech can “forecast a host of patient outcomes, including how long people may stay in hospitals, their odds of re-admission and chances they will
soon die.”

In this case, Google’s AI uses neural networks, which have proven effective at gathering data and then using it to learn and improve analysis.

It works by analysing patient’s data, such as their age, ethnicity and gender. This information is then joined up with hospital information, like prior diagnoses, current vital signs, and any lab results, reports The Sun.

In a test done in two hospitals, for predicting patient mortality, Google’s Medical Brain was 95% accurate in the first hospital and 93% accurate in the second.

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