Empowerment and Agency in the Age of Artificial Intelligence: Welcome to DrCHAT

Women, and women of reproductive age in particular, are one of the most vulnerable demographic groups in the 21st century. Restricted access to reproductive health care, accumulating socioeconomic pressures, and complex intimate challenges are just some reason why. Yet, together with new challenges emerge also new and imaginative solutions. Can artificial intelligence (AI) technology become an innovative way of empowering women with regard to health care? Our answer to this urgent question is DrCHAT.

Around 500 million English-speaking women across the globe can now talk to DrCHAT, a virtual doctor informed by human knowledge and empathy. Those 500 million women can now get free, anonymous, and high quality consultation—at any time, without an appointment or registration. The initial scope of DrCHAT is emergency contraception and the prevention of sexually transmitted infections (STIs). However the underlying AI technology allows rapid expansion to all areas of obstetrics, gynecology, and women’s health. All told, over 30 women’s health topics are already under development. DrCHAT will soon expand to include other medical specialties, such as Emergency Medicine, Pediatrics, Psychology, Cardiology, Endocrinology, and more.

Information on the Web is Inadequate

Free Web information is often inadequate, if not dangerous. For example, the various options available to prevent unwanted pregnancy have different levels of effectiveness on day 1, day 3, day 7, and day 10 after unprotected sexual intercourse. Which option is optimal in a specific case? Similarly, there are some steps you can take to reduce the risk of STI transmission in the first 72 hours after potential contact, which most people would not even be aware of without a face-to- face consultation with a trusted healthcare professional. Finally, information and recommendations found on the Web almost always fail to disclose which clinical standards they are based on (such as those of the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists ACOG); or indeed, whether they are built on any clinical standards or evidence-based practice guidelines at all.

The DrCHAT Difference

Rather than merely collecting and organizing information freely available on the Web, DrCHAT has been designed from the ground up by experienced physicians with clinical expertise, following ACOG guidelines for evidence-based medicine. DrCHAT simulates an actual doctor-patient dialogue and educates patients about clinical treatment steps. Think of it as equivalent to a second opinion by the top experts in the field.

As opposed to generic search engines, DrCHAT prompts the user with carefully curated questions, leading the patient through the necessary diagnostic steps to guide them to the most appropriate treatment options.

In addition to credibility, DrCHAT offers:
  • Availability 24/7 using any device
  • Accessibility without appointment, registration, or downloading
  • Anonymity, especially valuable when dealing with concerns of an intimate nature

  • What is Under the Hood?

    DrCHAT has been developed using the proprietary conversational AI technology of exClone. It involves multiple layers, including knowledge-based machine learning, natural language processing, and human dialogue theory. In summary, the technology converts content curated by experts into a conversational system, often referred to as a chatbot. In the case of DrCHAT, the curated content included documents, flow charts, images, and videos.