Fernandez-Luque L, Imran M
Int J Med Inform. pii: S1386-5056(18)30021-2. doi: 10.1016/j.ijmedinf.2018.01.015.
According to the World Health Organization (WHO), over 130 million people are in constant need of humanitarian assistance due to natural disasters, disease outbreaks, and conflicts, among other factors. These health crises can compromise the resilience of healthcare systems, which are essential for achieving the health objectives of the sustainable development goals (SDGs) of the United Nations (UN). During a humanitarian health crisis, rapid and informed decision making is required. This is often challenging due to information scarcity, limited resources, and strict time constraints. Moreover, the traditional approach to digital health development, which involves a substantial requirement analysis, a feasibility study, and deployment of technology, is ill-suited for many crisis contexts. The emergence of Web 2.0 technologies and social media platforms in the past decade, such as Twitter, has created a new paradigm of massive information and misinformation, in which new technologies need to be developed to aid rapid decision making during humanitarian health crises. Humanitarian health crises increasingly require the analysis of massive amounts of information produced by different sources, such as social media content, and, hence, they are a prime case for the use of artificial intelligence (AI) techniques to help identify relevant information and make it actionable. To identify challenges and opportunities for using AI in humanitarian health crises, we reviewed the literature on the use of AI techniques to process social media.