Tech & Health

June 27, 2023

Embí to help steer national AI code of conduct initiative

Vanderbilt’s Peter Embí, MD, MS, has been named to a National Academy of Medicine committee working to produce a code of conduct for the development and use of artificial intelligence in health, medical care and health research.

Peter Embí, MD, MS

The National Academy of Medicine (NAM) is launching a three-year initiative convening health, technology, research and bioethics leaders to produce a code of conduct for the development and use of artificial intelligence in health, medical care and health research.

Among members of the project’s 21-member steering committee is Peter Embí, MD, MS, professor and chair of Biomedical Informatics and Senior Vice President for Research and Innovation at Vanderbilt University Medical Center.

“With the rapidly growing capabilities of AI, its potential for positive impacts to health, as well as its potential for harm, it’s time for a focused national conversation about the appropriate use of this technology across health care and research,” Embí said.

“NAM is uniquely positioned to convene the relevant experts, constructively explore the complex issues, and cultivate consensus among key stakeholders including clinicians, patients, health system leaders, researchers, AI experts spanning academia and industry, and policymakers. I look forward to joining other members of the committee to steer this vital initiative.”

Jeff Balser, MD, PhD, is a member of the NAM Council, and is President and Chief Executive Officer of VUMC and Dean of Vanderbilt University School of Medicine,

“The assistance to be afforded by AI to patients, clinicians, health systems and researchers promises over time to transform our system of care in ways not yet fully imaginable,” Balser said.

“Now is the time to engage the attention of health advocates, experts from all walks, and policymakers in issues of AI governance for health and health care.”

The steering committee is comprised of ethics and equity experts, representatives of care delivery systems and tech companies, patient advocates, researchers and health care payers.

According to NAM, the effort is a response to a growing call for guidelines that can facilitate governance standards for the development and application of AI.

The project will aim to clarify roles and responsibilities of various stakeholders on issues of privacy, ethics, equity, accountability and applicability. In doing so, it will draw from and build upon related work, including that of the Coalition for Health AI, of which VUMC is a founding member.

The code of conduct will offer a best-practice framework, subject to testing, validation and improvement as AI and AI governance capabilities progress.

The steering committee answers to its sponsor, the NAM Leadership Consortium.

“This collaborative effort will help ensure that the application of health AI is based on the best science and is consistent with ethical principles and societal values in pursuit of effectiveness, efficiency and equity for all members of society,” said Michael McGinnis, MD, MA, MPP, executive director of the NAM Leadership Consortium.

To help gain public input, the project will organize informational gatherings and collaborative events and activities.

For more information, visit the project website.