How AI Voice Assistants Can Revolutionize Health

How AI Voice Assistants Can Revolutionize Health

How AI Voice Assistants Can Revolutionize Health. Siri, Alexa, Google and the future of voice and health technology

The next health revolution is in your voice

The vision for this future is to unlock the human voice as a meaningful measurement of health. AI voice assistants can transform speech into a vital sign, enabling early detection and predictions of oncoming conditions. Similar to how temperature is an indicator of fever, vocal biomarkers can provide us with a more complete picture of our health.

Global problems in mental health to solve

One in four people globally will be affected by major or minor mental health issues at some point in their lives. Around 450 million people currently suffer from conditions such as anxiety, stress, depression, or others, placing mental health among the leading cause of ill-health worldwide. Many of these issues are preventable if detected and treated early, however, nearly two-thirds of people with ill-health do not seek nor receive appropriate help.

Voice as a biomarker for health

Spoken communication encodes a wealth of information. Only recently has research and technology intersected to enable the use of our own voice to be one of the most effective biomarkers of health.

“Think about how much precision and coordination of muscles and brain regions are involved to produce voice, and various diseases can subtly or acutely affect one’s voice and use of language.”

— Dr. Ghomi, UW Memory and Brain Wellness Center

Scientific research is validating voice as a biomarker. Some key findings:

  • Acoustic features linked to psychiatric disorders such as depression, PTSD, anxiety, eating disorders [1]
  • Vocal biomarker is associated with hospitalization and mortality among heart failure patients [2]
  • Vocal biomarkers linked to depression severity and treatment response [3]

Vocal biomarkers are medical signs coming from features in our voice, similar to other biomarkers like pulse and blood pressure. Capturing and analyzing subtle changes in our voice: pitch, intensity, vocal tract coordination, jitters, shimmers, tremors, pauses, etc., creates a range of health measurements that provide a more complete picture of our health in seconds.

voice-assistant artificial-intelligence technology mental-health health ai

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