Ping An opens unmanned medical clinic

Chinese one-stop healthcare platform Ping An Good Doctor has announced the world’s first commercially operational unmanned medical clinic.

The firm’s “One-minute Clinic” has been formally unveiled in a scenic area in Wuzhen. It will provide a high-speed, convenient, one-stop-shop for medical and healthcare services for nearby residents, visitors to the scenic area and guests of the 2018 World Internet Conference.

The clinic includes two major functional modules, an “Independent Advisory Room” and a “Smart Medicine Cabinet.” Patients consult with a cloud computing doctor in the advisory room to receive a preliminary diagnostic suggestion, and may purchase prescribed medicine from the medicine cabinet afterwards. The clinic stocks more than 100 common drugs. Unavailable medicines may be purchased online using the Ping An Good Doctor smartphone application, receiving the drug from nearby pharmacies with a one hour delivery service.

During a one week trial, the daily average advisory volume approached 100 visitors.

The firm plans to popularise the clinics in public areas such as pharmacies, communities, enterprises, schools, scenic areas, markets, highway service stations, and so on. Combined with Ping An Good Doctor’s offline network of 3100 new hospitals and more than 60,000 neighbourhood clinics, the clinic is expected to quickly meet real-time medical and healthcare needs of city residents.

Ping An plans to expand to 1000 units across China by the end of the year.

A spokesperson for Ping An Good Doctor revealed that the clinic’s AI doctor was researched and developed by a team formed from over 200 world-class artificial intelligence experts, trained using data from over 300 million visits and consultations. More than 2000 common diseases are covered by the AI’s data set.

A back office staffed by expert physicians are engaged to verify the diagnosis and advice of the AI doctor.

Overcrowded hospitals are part of the cause behind the present difficulty in obtaining quality healthcare in China.

Information from a third-party research institute shows that, in 2016, including transport and waiting-in-line times, Chinese patients consume an average of three hours per medical visit, although the actual time for diagnoses averages only eight minutes per visit.

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