As I have written and documented before, medical costs are the greatest threat to the US based on Medicare debt (27 trillion and climbing fast) and other medical debt and the Pentagon saying debt is the single greatest threat to the US.
Semis/Mems/Sensor technology offer a significant part of the solution. Vinod Khosla maintains tech (AI and other semi related techs) could reduce the need for doctors by 50% and improve medical. Already in many areas AI and advanced imaging can out diagnose even the best doctors. As far as controlling and monitoring the body, the semi/mems/sensor sector offer numerous low cost, highly effective solutions. Excessive markup and regulations need to removed to open a flood of innovation.
The reality is machines of all types are getting more capable at an ever increasing rate and in most areas people are not and in fact slowly degenerate with age.
More advanced robotic systems than they have now many feel could actually perform some surgeries with minimal supervision and in the future totally autonomous. A robot arm is far more accurate in every respect and combined with robotic vision from the arm to near the operating tip could give it advantages to human could match. It could
also operate at a higher speed cutting down the chance for complications and infection significantly. The shorter the duration of surgery it has been found, the less chance for many problems.
I have talked to numerous doctors and they have said technicians could do a significant part of what they do at sharply reduced cost. The markups in medical in everything are beyond insane(50 to 1 is common and 100 to 1 not unheard of) and also need to be addressed. 60% of nurses have only a two year degree and make as much or more than a senior engineer and US medical ranks 37th in quality. This is all now coming to a head, just look at the financial or news channels today. The semi/mems/sensor sector offers a significant part of the solution. This could easily dwarf the auto sector as the next great opportunity for the tech sector, while helping preserve the stability of the US. Comments solicited and wanted
Addition: Since 2008 the price for the most commonly used branded prescription drugs have soared
208% compared to a 14% rise for consumer prices.
Medical Robots News & Articles - IEEE Spectrum