Transparency and black box medicine


  • Alison Hall

    PHG Foundation

Project summary

Artificial intelligence (AI) in health is an example of black box medicine. This term describes the use of opaque computational models to make decisions related to healthcare. Most people think it is necessary to understand the inner workings of these models, to ensure safety and efficacy and to regulate them.

We will look at what ethical and legal rules should apply to black box medicine. In particular, we will look at how General Data Protection Regulation affects what developers and users should say about black box devices or systems that are used in health. We will develop a model for what should happen and test this in three separate meetings of doctors, patients and developers, using examples such as imaging, such as scans or X-rays, or doctors using computers to make decisions about patient care.