IBM CEO: “Healthcare will be our moon shot”

Here are our thoughts on IBM’s announcement of its new business unit, Watson Health. Through this channel, the technology powerhouse will offer cloud-based access to its Watson supercomputer. What is Watson? It’s a first-of-its-kind cognitive computing system for analyzing healthcare data.

IBM CEO Ginni Rometty recently sat down with journalist Charlie Rose to talk more about Watson and what it can do. She offered the following hypothetical example: there are hundreds upon hundreds of treatment courses for cancer out there. Using Watson and its cognitive computing model, a patient anywhere in the world could input his symptoms and medical history. Watson could analyze all of the information, come up with a likely diagnosis, odds of survival, potential treatment conflicts, and a recommendation for the best course of treatment tailored specifically to that individual. And it’s not just using an algorithm; with artificial intelligence, Watson is always learning, always adapting and getting smarter.

Rometty compared Watson Health to landing on the moon, telling Rose “healthcare will be our moon shot.” We couldn’t agree more.

We believe Watson and technology like it will be the next great frontier in global healthcare. It’s the same kind of technology harnessed by My Health–albeit on a larger scale–to provide unmatched access to patient medical records and healthcare solutions. It’s based on the same belief at the core of the My Health mission: more data leads to better, more personalized solutions for better health and improved quality of life.

This cloud-based service is just the beginning. IBM has already had several thousand companies express interest in building upon Watson, developing new uses for the system and ways to make it readily accessible to consumers. Soon, you’ll be able to use the technology on your Apple watch, integrate it with your Google glass or access it with the tap of a finger on the next great wearable device.

You can begin building your own personal health platform right now with My Health–your records, in your control, with personalized solutions at your fingertips. We can’t wait to see what the future holds for this exciting new industry. Watch the full Charlie Rose interview with Ginni Rometty here.

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