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Integrating AI to streamline workflows and improve data management

Artificial intelligence is a beacon of advancement, propelling data integrity, scalability and security to the forefront in today’s dynamic public sector landscape. The ability to make data-driven decisions and deliver efficient services is crucial, but protecting citizen privacy remains a top priority.

In a new FedScoop interview, Dr. Kimberly McManus, deputy chief technology officer of AI for the Department of Veterans Affairs and Andrew Davidson, SVP products at MongoDB, discuss how AI can be combined with modern tools to empower public sector agencies to better serve their communities while upholding trust.

For example, McManus shared how the Veterans Health Administration (VHA) is actively exploring AI technologies to streamline workflows and improve efficiency. They are currently engaged in numerous pilot projects. One involves automating the process of documenting clinical encounters by recording doctor-patient conversations, transcribing, and then summarizing notes that doctors can review before adding them to a patient’s electronic health records.

The other encompasses community care document processing. Currently, VHA receives numerous documents from external sources, which must be integrated into medical records. Using optical character recognition and extraction technologies, VHA is looking to streamline the processing of these documents.

“Both of these projects are in their early phases but are showing promising results and significant time savings for staff,” says McManus.

In addition to these initiatives, public sector agencies must also consider how they are integrating AI to enhance data management. McManus stressed the importance of choosing the right data management platforms to support various use cases, including transactional databases for operational processes and an enterprise data warehouse for AI and data analytics. She also emphasized the significance of a robust data catalog to identify available data types and the exploration of new database technologies like vector databases for AI pilots.

Meanwhile, Davidson discussed the evolution of data management platforms in the age of AI and highlighted the importance of data modeling and vector search capabilities — and integrating these into software applications to maximize AI benefits. “Not only are we seeing the data solutions themselves evolving but also the team structures,” says Davidson.

McManus and Davidson also discussed the importance of data privacy. For instance, VHA is working on several fronts to ensure privacy-preserving data analysis, including differential privacy, removal of personally identifiable and protected health information, synthetic data and federated learning. These methods aim to balance data accessibility with stringent privacy requirements.

Davidson added that modern data solutions, such as variable encryption and role-based access control, are critical for maintaining data privacy in AI applications. He also mentioned the benefits of leveraging cloud-based services, which offer higher levels of abstraction, allowing smaller teams to move faster while maintaining security.

Learn more about how MongoDB can accelerate and simplify time-to-mission for federal, state and local governments, as well as defense agencies, across the public sector.

This video panel discussion was produced by Scoop News Group, for FedScoop, and underwritten by MongoDB and AWS.