The Future of AI in Health and Human Services

As the largest public health department in the world, the U.S. Department of Human Services (HHS) is a standard-bearer for global public health practices. One of the ways HHS leads is by pioneering the use of new technologies in the health and human services spaces to see how they may be applied more broadly across our operating and staff divisions and the programs they administer. One example of this is Artificial Intelligence, or simply “AI”. Far from being the hostile world-ending singularity we have come to know (and fear) thanks to fictional depictions, AI is actually a tool we use and even regulate at HHS to make our jobs more efficient and increase the value of our work.

In fact, HHS has already made many advances in the use of AI. For example, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has been developing a regulatory framework for AI/machine learning (ML)-driven software to provide industry with appropriate safety and effectiveness guidelines. The National Institutes of Health (NIH) has collaborated and invested in AI-based projects to discover health solutions across research and medical settings, including using AI to analyze biomedical imaging to diagnose diseases such as COVID-19. Through ReImagine HHS‘s Buy Smarter initiative, we utilized AI to modernize the department’s acquisition process to achieve over $1 billion in projected savings and cost avoidance over ten years, including a single contract with over $700 million in savings. We also used AI to analyze HHS regulations, resulting in a first-of-its-kind regulatory “clean-up” initiative across several HHS agencies. And this is just a start.

While the future is uncertain, one thing is clear: AI will be a critical enabler of our mission. To combat 21st century threats to the health and well-being of all Americans, we need a 21st century playbook that supports a sensible use of, and familiarity with, AI. Which is why, today, we are announcing the next step in HHS’s journey to enterprise-wide AI adoption.

HHS is proud to announce its first enterprise Artificial Intelligence Strategy, developed over the last year through engagement with experts and stakeholders throughout the Department. This strategy will be carried forward and refined through a new AI Council and an AI Community of Practice, and is intended, like the field it covers, to evolve and adapt. Our new strategy, governance, and commitment to collaboration will position us to coordinate the great work in AI and machine learning already happening within HHS divisions, and to effectively implement Executive Order 13960 promoting the use of trustworthy AI in the federal government. We will foster, adapt to, and benefit from the extraordinary innovations emerging from the synthesis of health and human services, big data and computer science, and will maintain our role as the civilian agency leader in making wide – and wise – use of these transformative technologies.

Our vision: “Together with its partners in academia, industry and government, HHS will leverage AI to solve previously unsolvable problems by continuing to lead advances in the health and wellbeing of the American people, responding to the use of AI across the health and human services ecosystem, and scaling trustworthy AI adoption across the Department.”

This vision recognizes that the Department has multiple roles in AI – as a developer and early adopter for the use of AI in its own operations, as a regulator of new devices, technologies and techniques, as an investor through its grant-making, and especially as we go forward, as an overall catalyst and accelerator for the fields of health and human services. This will require intentional openness and deliberate engagement with innovators who share our mission to enhance the health and wellbeing of the American people.

Please read our entire strategy and consider how you could contribute to this new era at HHS.

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    Learn about the countless Judiciary employees across the court system who have volunteered to help people in need in their communities during the COVID-19 pandemic.
    [Read More…]
  • Over 300 People Facing Federal Charges For Crimes Committed During Nationwide Demonstrations
    In Crime News
    The Department of Justice announced today that more than 300 individuals in 29 states and Washington, D.C., have been charged for crimes committed adjacent to or under the guise of peaceful demonstrations since the end of May.
    [Read More…]
  • Ireland Travel Advisory
    In Travel
    Reconsider travel to [Read More…]
  • Retirement Security: Older Women Report Facing a Financially Uncertain Future
    In U.S GAO News
    In all 14 focus groups GAO held with older women, women described some level of anxiety about financial security in retirement. Many expressed concerns about the future of Social Security and Medicare benefits, and the costs of health care and housing. Women in the groups also cited a range of experiences that hindered their retirement security, such as divorce or leaving the workforce before they planned to (see fig.). Women in all 14 focus groups said their lack of personal finance education negatively affected their ability to plan for retirement. Many shared ideas about personal finance education including the view that it should be incorporated into school curriculum starting in kindergarten and continuing through college, and should be available through all phases of life. Women Age 70 and Over by Marital Status Note: Percentages do not add up to 100 percent due to rounding. Individual women's financial security is also linked to their household where resources may be shared among household members. According to the 2016 Survey of Consumer Finances, among households with older women, about 23 percent of those with white respondents and 40 percent of those with African American respondents fell short of a measure of retirement confidence, indicating their income was not sufficient to maintain their standard of living. The likelihood of a household reporting high retirement confidence rose in certain cases. For example among households of similar wealth, those with greater liquidity in their portfolio and those with defined benefit plan income were more likely to report high retirement confidence. Older adults represent a growing portion of the U.S. population and older women have a longer life expectancy, on average, than older men. Prior GAO work has found that challenges women face during their working years can affect their lifetime earnings and retirement income. For example, we found women were overrepresented in low wage professions, paid less money than their male counterparts during their careers, and were more likely to leave the workforce to care for family members. Taken together, these trends may have significant effects on women's financial security in retirement. GAO was asked to report on the financial security of older women. This report examines (1) women retirees' perspectives on their financial security, and (2) what is known about the financial security of older women in retirement. GAO held 14 non-generalizable focus groups with older women in both urban and rural areas in each of the four census regions. GAO also analyzed data from three nationally representative surveys—the 2019 Current Population Survey, the Health and Retirement Study (2002-2014 longitudinal data), and the 2016 Survey of Consumer Finances. For more information, contact Charles Jeszeck at (202) 512-7215 or jeszeckc@gao.gov.
    [Read More…]
  • State Department Terrorist Designations of HASM and Its Leaders and Maintenance of PIJ FTO Designation
    In Crime Control and Security News
    Office of the [Read More…]
  • Secretary Michael R. Pompeo With Tony Katz of The Morning News on WIBC Indianapolis
    In Crime Control and Security News
    Michael R. Pompeo, [Read More…]
  • Secretary Pompeo’s Travel to Doha, Qatar
    In Crime Control and Security News
    Morgan Ortagus, [Read More…]
  • ‘All too frequent tragedies demand action to improve judicial security,’ Judge tells Judicial Conference
    In U.S Courts
    “Four federal judges and three family members have been killed since 1979. These horrific tragedies must stop,” Judge David W. McKeague told the Judicial Conference of the United States today.
    [Read More…]
  • West Virginia Doctor Found Guilty of Unlawfully Distributing Opioids
    In Crime News
    A federal jury found a West Virginia doctor guilty today of unlawfully distributing opioids to his patients. The defendant was charged in a September 2019 indictment as part of the second Appalachian Regional Prescription Opioid (ARPO) Strike Force Takedown, a coordinated effort by the Justice Department’s Fraud Section to target unlawful drug diversion activities in areas of the country particularly hard-hit by the opioid epidemic.
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  • Fireside Chat at IHS CERAWeek
    In Climate - Environment - Conservation
    John Kerry, Special [Read More…]
  • Department of Justice’s COPS Office Invests More Than $536.7 Million in Grants to Improve Public Safety, Reduce Crime and Advance Community Policing
    In Crime News
    The Department of Justice’s Office of Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS Office) awarded more than $536.7 million in Fiscal Year 2020 to increase law enforcement hiring and to improve school safety, combat opioids and methamphetamine, advance community policing efforts, provide training to the law enforcement field, and protect the health of our nation’s officers and deputies.
    [Read More…]
  • Company’s Vice President Pleads Guilty to Negligently Releasing Asbestos
    In Crime News
    A New York man pleaded guilty today to negligently releasing asbestos and thereby exposing victims to an increased risk of death or serious bodily injury.
    [Read More…]
  • Secretary Blinken’s Meeting with Sweden’s Minister for Foreign Affairs Linde
    In Crime Control and Security News
    Office of the [Read More…]
  • Secretary Antony J. Blinken With Roula Khalaf of The Financial Times
    In Crime Control and Security News
    Antony J. Blinken, [Read More…]
  • NASA Juno Takes First Images of Jovian Moon Ganymede’s North Pole
    In Space
    Infrared images from [Read More…]
  • Home Depot to Pay $20,750,000 Penalty for Nationwide Failure to Follow Rules for Conducting Renovations Involving Lead Paint
    In Crime News
    The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Department of Justice today announced a proposed nationwide settlement with Home Depot U.S.A. Inc. resolving alleged violations of the EPA’s Lead Renovation, Repair and Painting (RRP) Rule at home renovations performed by Home Depot’s contractors across the country. The States of Utah, Massachusetts, and Rhode Island, which have EPA-authorized RRP programs, are joining the United States in this action.
    [Read More…]