NEJM Group, the publisher of the New England Journal of Medicine, is planning a new journal, NEJM AI, to identify and evaluate state-of-the-art applications of artificial intelligence to clinical medicine. In addition to original research, NEJM AI will provide reviews, policy perspectives, and accessible educational material targeted at practicing physicians and clinician leaders interested in applying AI, computer scientists seeking to translate algorithmic advances to clinical practice, and policy makers and regulators.
The past decade has seen a resurgence of artificial intelligence (AI) in medicine enabled by new advancements in machine learning, from deep learning systems for computer vision to the latest conversational agents based on large language models. There are FDA-approved devices that use AI to read a broad range of imaging modalities, programs that provide diagnostic assistance, and software that helps outline possible treatments and provide prognostic data for clinicians. Although many such devices have met regulatory standards, the uptake in the medical community has failed to meet expectations.
What is missing? In addition to needed technical advances, AI must meet the same bar for clinical evidence that is expected from other clinical interventions. For a given AI tool to be used, evidence that it will perform in a safe and effective manner must be demonstrated using randomized controlled trials designed to test the tool against an established standard. For the tool to be accepted, trials need to be designed to show that it provides a benefit to the patient, the patient’s family, the health professionals using the tool, the health care system at large, or some combination of these potential beneficiaries. Unfortunately, there is currently limited high-quality evidence of this type available for many medical AI systems.
In addition to a stronger evidence base for clinical AI, standardized datasets and benchmark tasks are needed as well. The broader machine learning community has embraced shared datasets and common benchmarks to drive rapid progress and communication. Medicine presents unique technical, ethical, and legal questions around both the development and the sustainable deployment of AI. A forum is needed for high-quality evidence and resource-sharing alongside debate about the best approaches to integrating AI within the healthcare system.
NEJM AI will be an interdisciplinary journal facilitating dialogue among stakeholders invested in using AI to transform medicine. NEJM AI will intentionally pair “pre-clinical” and clinical articles to deliver critical context to both clinicians and non-clinician researchers. The journal will bridge the fast-moving developments in AI, informatics, and technology in medicine with the application of these advancements to clinical practice. NEJM AI will cover the application of AI methodologies and data science to biomedical informatics, connected health, telemedicine, medical images and imaging, personalized medicine, policy and regulation, and the ethical and medicolegal implications of AI.
The journal will provide a unique forum for publishing high-quality content that researchers, clinicians, patients, industry, and government expect from NEJM Group. See our article types here.
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Twice-monthly newsletter with information from the latest podcast—excerpts, quotes, and takeaways. Podcast hosts and NEJM AI editors will suggest readings of interest and list articles on AI published by NEJM Group and other journals.
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