Today, the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) released the Blueprint for an AI Bill of Rights set up as a guide for the design, development, and deployment of artificial intelligence (AI) in healthcare. The White House press release states that OSTP finds that among the great challenges posed to democracy today is the use of technology, data, and automated systems in ways that threaten the rights of the American public. The report cites that systems used to support patient care can be unsafe, ineffective, or biased. At the same time, these same systems can support the growth, development, and innovation of care delivery.
Five Principles. OSTP cites five principles to guide development of AI systems. OSTP states that the Blueprint for an AI Bill of Rights is meant to assist governments and the private sector in moving principles into practice.
- Safety and Effective Systems
- Algorithmic Discrimination Protections
- Data Privacy
- Notice and Explanation
- Human Alternatives, Considerations, and Fallback
Framing the Issue as Rights, Opportunities, or Access. The White House framed these issues in terms of
- Civil rights, civil liberties, and privacy, including freedom of speech, voting, and protections from discrimination, excessive punishment, unlawful surveillance, and violations of privacy and other freedoms in both public and private sector contexts;
- Equal opportunities, including equitable access to education, housing, credit, employment, and other programs; and
- Access to critical resources or services, such as healthcare, financial services, safety, social services, non-deceptive information about goods and services, and government benefits.
New Definitions Drive the Principles. The AI Bill of Rights includes definitions, some of which we have seen used in other health equity contexts and others that are new. Definitions include:
- Algorithmic discrimination
- Automated system
- Rights, opportunities, or access
- Sensitive data
- Sensitive domains
- Surveillance technology
- Underserved communities
What’s Next — Al and the Road Ahead
The AI Bill of Rights and its framework did not analyze or take a position on legislative and regulatory proposals in municipal, state, and federal government, or those in other countries. The report found that some of the protections exist under the U.S. Constitution and others exist in current law. Within the AI Bill of Rights OSTP provided real life examples of how their guiding principles became a reality through law, policy, and practice. Healthcare providers and those who develop, use, and invest in AI in healthcare should review these principles and keep an eye on potential new legislation, regulations, and enforcement related to AI in healthcare.