A scientist has warned AI will eventually make doctors 'obsolete'.
Artificial intelligence has a 'near unlimited capacity' to diagnose diseases and perform surgery more accurately than medics, according to Dr Jörg Goldhahn.
Dr Goldhahn, from ETH Zurich, also argues robots may help overcome healthcare funding shortages due to them being cheaper to hire and train than humans.
But while Dr Vanessa Rampton acknowledges AI may be a useful aid to medics, she argues it will never completely replace human healthcare.
'Computers aren't able to care for patients in the sense of showing devotion or concern for the other as a person, because they are not people and do not care about anything,' Dr Rampton, from McGill University, said.
In a debate published in The BMJ today, Dr Goldhahn argued AI can process data and assimilate new information at a speed humans simply cannot match.
Health data is increasingly relying on everything from apps to electronic medical records and social media to create as clear a picture as possible about a disease and its patients.
At the same time, robots are 'reading' this information, as well as keeping on top of ever-expanding health research.
'The notion that today's physicians could approximate this knowledge by keeping abreast of current medical research while maintaining close contacts with their patients is an illusion not least because of the sheer volume of data,' Dr Goldhahn said.
Last year, a robot even managed to pass China's national medical exam, exceeding the minimum mark required by 96 points.'
Read more: AI will make doctors 'obsolete' due to robots being 'cheaper to hire and train than medics'
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