Smarter Health: Artificial Intelligence and the Future of American Healthcare

About the Program

Smarter Health: Artificial Intelligence and the Future of American Healthcare is a four-part exploration of how artificial intelligence and machine learning may revolutionize the healthcare industry. We’ll investigate the technology already available or in development for clinical settings, criticize the ethical dilemmas the technology presents in medicine, and understand the guardrails and regulations in progress to advise AI advancements.

This series will also introduce listeners to the people involved in AI in healthcare; scientists developing tools, clinicians and doctors using the tools, and patients experiencing changing technology as part of their care.

On Point is a daily news program where host Meghna Chakrabarti leads provocative conversations that help make sense of the world. Each show is a deeply researched, beautifully produced hour. Listeners will learn, be challenged — and have some fun, too. Produced by WBUR in Boston, distributed by American Public Media.


Four, one-hour long programs

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Broadcast Window

Episode 1: Potential of AI in health care? July 1, 2022 - Sept 30, 2022
Episode 2: Ethical Considerations July 7, 2022 - Sept 30, 2022
Episode 3: Guardrails, guidelines, and regulation July 13, 2022 - Sept 30, 2022
Episode 4: People July 19, 2022 - Sept 30, 2022

Broadcast Rights

Available to all APM affiliates. Affiliate stations may carry each episode multiple times before the air window closes. The program must be carried in its entirety - no excerpting is permitted. Simulcast streaming rights are available for this program. Prior to carrying this program, stations must contact their American Public Media Station Relations Representative.

Episode 1: Potential of AI in health care
July 1, 2022 - Sept 30, 2022
We will lay out the state of AI in healthcare—the developments already on the market and the kinds of developments researchers think has the most potential to change healthcare.

Our live guest is Dr. Ziad Obermeyer, an emergency medicine physician and a public health policy professor at UC Berkeley. His focus is on the intersection of machine learning and health.

Episode 2: Ethical considerations
July 7, 2022 - Sept 30, 2022
AI has potential in healthcare as long as important ethical considerations are addressed in three areas: data collection, algorithm development, and implementation of AI in health care.

Our live guests are Glenn Cohen, a legal scholar in bioethics and professor at Harvard Law School and Yolonda Wilson, a bioethicist and associate professor of health care ethics at St. Louis University.

Episode 3: Guardrails, guidelines, and regulation
July 13, 2022 - Sept 30, 2022
As AI develops in the healthcare space, regulations also need to develop. The FDA, until recently, only regulated drugs and medical devices. AI is software that is constantly changing. We talk to the head of the FDA’s digital health division, Dr. Matthew Diamond, about what role it will play as AI expands. We’ll also talk to experts about the kind of guardrails needed to ensure safety and regulations that could push the market toward developing tools to serve larger patient populations.

Our live guests include Finale Doshi-Velez, a computer science professor at Harvard University working on decision making models between AI and humans. Her focuses include human-AI interaction, AI accountability, and responsible and effective AI regulation.

Episode 4: People
July 19, 2022 - Sept 30, 2022
The potential of the technology, the ethical questions around deploying it, the guidelines regulating it and in this last episode—the people working with it, developing it, and the patient receiving care involving AI. How can this technology thrive in our complex and broken healthcare system where doing the most good or giving more patients access to care isn’t always incentivized.

We’ll hear from Dr. Vindell Washington, CEO of health tech company Verily. Dr. Sumeet Chugh, the head of Cedars Sinai AI department will join us live as well as Stacy Hurt, a patient advocate.

Meghna Chakrabarti headshot

Meghna Chakrabarti

Meghna Chakrabarti is host and editor of On Point from WBUR. Based in Boston, she is on the air Monday through Friday. Meghna edited and hosted editions of On Point that won a national Murrow Award in 2021 for radio documentary, a Gracie Award in 2022 for radio documentary, and a regional Murrow award in 2022 for radio documentary. She was also the host of Modern Love: The Podcast, a collaboration of WBUR and The New York Times between 2016 and 2020.

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