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New Delhi: In a stark warning to the medical community worldwide, a prominent American surgeon, Dr. Atul Gawande, has cautioned that doctors failing to utilize artificial intelligence (AI) for early disease detection may face redundancy in the future.

Speaking exclusively to NDTV on Friday, Dr. Gawande, who also serves as the Global Health Chief at the US Agency for International Development (USAID), emphasized the critical role of AI in modern healthcare. “Artificial intelligence will not replace doctors, but a doctor who does not know how to use AI will be replaced by someone who does,” he stated.

Dr. Gawande highlighted the transformative impact of AI in healthcare, citing examples such as AI-powered chest X-ray systems that enable instant assessment of patients’ conditions, leading to quicker treatment and potentially saving lives.

He further underscored the significance of AI in early disease detection, particularly in combating tuberculosis, one of the leading causes of mortality globally. Dr. Gawande emphasized the importance of frontline healthcare workers having access to specialized AI capabilities for faster detection and intervention.

India’s Vital Role in Global Health

Dr. Gawande also praised India’s pivotal role in global health, particularly in vaccine manufacturing. He emphasized India’s capacity to serve as a crucial base for vaccine production, essential for meeting the demands of future pandemics.

Highlighting USAID’s collaboration with Indian manufacturers, Dr. Gawande announced plans to roll out new vaccines, including a low-cost malaria jab, underscoring the significance of such initiatives in advancing global health goals.

Addressing Health Challenges

In addition to discussing the potential of AI in healthcare, Dr. Gawande addressed several pressing health challenges, including antibiotic overuse and air pollution. He emphasized the need for stringent regulation of antibiotic usage to combat antibiotic resistance and highlighted the devastating impact of air pollution on public health.

Dr. Gawande called for robust government engagement and collaborative efforts to address these health challenges effectively. He reaffirmed the United States’ commitment to partnering with India in advancing shared global health and development priorities.

As World Tuberculosis Day approaches, Dr. Gawande’s visit to India serves as a testament to the enduring collaboration between the United States and India in tackling pressing health issues.


Dr. Atul Gawande’s insights shed light on the critical intersection of technology and healthcare, emphasizing the transformative potential of AI in revolutionizing disease detection and treatment. As the world grapples with evolving health challenges, embracing AI-driven solutions becomes increasingly imperative to safeguard public health and well-being.

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