Cognitive Empathy within Patient-AI Communication for Diagnostic Reasoning

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Department of Cognitive and Learning Sciences


Empathy is an essential part of communication in healthcare. For artificial intelligence (AI) to be successfully incorporated as an integral part of healthcare systems, it may need to incorporate cognitively empathetic interactions with patients, meaning it uses the reasoning, the perspectives, and the information of patients as much as possible. In this paper, we discuss four lab experiments in which we tested different aspects of empathy using the AI Cognitive Empathy Scale (AICES). Overall, cognitive empathy elements show promise to create a shared understanding in patients-AI communication that may lead to increased patient satisfaction and willingness to use AI systems for initial diagnosis purposes.

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Proceedings of the Human Factors and Ergonomics Society Annual Meeting