Mental Health: Growing Concern at Workplace!

The tendency to discuss mental health issues is not yet common in the 21st century. The sufferer is ashamed of discussing it despite being a serious problem. The fear of being bullied or fooled around causes discomfort to share their problems with others. 

According to the recent World Health Organization(WHO) report, one in four people in the world is dealing with mental disorders and around 450 million people are suffering alike situation positioning mental disorders as a leading cause of ill-health worldwide.

This has led to an increase in the number of patients dealing with mental health issues escalating the number of suicides. 

Most of the mental health sufferers are Millennials and Gen-Zers. In the fast-paced world, people are striving hard to reach their goals. In this phase, there are a lot of people who are going through mental health issues due to work-related burnout. Burnout in simple terms means when someone is emotionally and physically exhausted and drained. 

For example, a graduate student finds difficult to get a handsome paying job in a saturated market where there are thousands of waiting for the same job. It then becomes financially challenging which leads to high-stress levels and depression.

Also long working hours, unfeasible expectations from managers, less pay, no upward mobility, poor communication and management practices, less support from the senior officials, inadequate health and safety policies, are some of the major causes affecting the employee’s mental health. 

WHO asserted that depression and anxiety cause a loss of productivity of $1 trillion a year in the global economy.

There arises a need to access the situation by employers. Because it will not only give mental support to the employees but also it will be a good business strategy to improve the productivity of the company. Because if the employees are stress-free and feel goods working in the company, they will work with full potential and capabilities which ultimately benefits the company.

Increasing mental health problems have also caught the attention of the researchers to incorporate technology to tackle mental disorders. Currently, researchers are finding ways to adopt artificial intelligence to screen, diagnose and treat mental problems.

Recently Microsoft has collaborated with a leading mental health company, SilverCloud Health to develop an Artificial Intelligence-based mechanism to improve mental health problems. The collaboration offers to deliver digital CBT-based programs and making treatment more accessible to the people. Researchers at Microsoft Research Cambridge are finding ways to incorporate machine learning to provide quality care to the patients suffering from mental illness by treating according to individual needs.

The mental health issue is a serious concern to be looked after. If the source of issues impacting mental health is identified it becomes easy to take steps to deal with it. Many organizations are adopting different ways for a healthy work environment. Researchers are also taking a stand to deal with mental illness. 

The World Conference on Mental Health will discuss more about intellectual learning of mental health and psychological resilience.

Robotics for Climate Conditions? It’s happening!

The era of the fourth revolution is here where robots will make robots. Recently, ABB began its new construction of robotics manufacturing and research facility in the world’s largest robotics market, China.  The new construction will be the world’s most versatile and advanced factory in the robotics industry. It will be a center where robots will make robots. It will employ all the latest technological advancements such as artificial intelligence, machine learning, automation, and other cutting-edge technologies.

The fourth revolution also called Industry 4.0  has changed the world used to work earlier in all three revolutions. Almost half of the work performed by a human today is automated. Now researchers are also finding ways to incorporate advanced technology to curb global climate change. 

Human activities largely contribute to climate change by emitting huge amount of greenhouse gases impacting the earth’s atmosphere leading to the climate crisis. 

Robotics and automation deployment will help to reduce the negative impact of human activities. The technology has opened up opportunities for protection of the environment as well as research.

The emerging technology is having the potential to build the infrastructure and facility to lessen greenhouse gas emissions. The researchers suggest that automation and robotics can play a leading role in impacting climate resilience. 

Robotics is already a leading technology with automation as its core aspect. Automation applied in mass will lead to less consumption and emission.  

Earlier cars were manufactured by skilled artisans. But today, manufacturing of the car is wholly automated, with man workforce replaced by robotic workers. The technologies of industry 4.0 have enabled efficient energy management in industries. The use of automation in car manufacturing has lessened the emission of metals and minerals impacting the environment.  

Similarly, the increasing population has led to an increase in demand for food production. The agriculture production practices are degrading the ecosystems such as terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems, and also exhausting water resources propelling the climate change. 

Here technology has to be incorporated to play a vital role. Most of the countries in the world are adopting technological advancements in agricultural practices. Robots have started replacing manpower. The robotics are performing agricultural tasks from watering fields, weed control, mowing, pruning, seeding, spraying and thinning, navigation in the fields, sorting and packing. Vertical farms are being constructed which are fully automated thereby augmenting space and improving production efficiency. These applications of the technology are reducing emissions by preserving the natural environment. 

The automated technology does not release harmful emissions and lessens the pollution causing tools such as trucks which are responsible for heavy emissions of smog per day. The automation technology uses fewer energy resources and hence produce less waste. 

The waste industry has also started to use mechatronic innovations to cut down the handling cost thus improving the impact of waste on the environment. The automated process in waste management can help reduce carbon dioxide emissions.  

Surely, the use of automation and robotics will help to restraint the factors impacting climate change. The upcoming conference on Advanced Robotics, Mechatronics, and Artificial Intelligence will discuss about latest technological advancements and their applications.

Is AI boon to Ophthalmology?

Artificial Intelligence(AI) is playing a significant role in the industry and is applicable in most of the sectors. With the increasing number of visual problems, artificial intelligence has a lot to offer in the eye care sector as well. AI has a crucial role in the diagnosis and treatment of ophthalmic disease. 

A recent study suggests that AI has played an immense role in the identification of diabetic retinopathy. Researchers said that AI has matched the performance to diagnose diabetic retinopathy the same as done by the expert.  In fact, it has succeeded more than expected. It recognized the attributes from images that might indicate disease, of which the software was not even programmed.  AI on itself figured out by simply looking at other thousands of diseased and healthy eyes.

Artificial intelligence is the science that deals with computer algorithms, programs, and codes to learn, analyze, identify and interpret data.  AI is assumed to perform better than humans, especially in image recognition.  

Similarly, another research was conducted to detect glaucoma and VF loss with a visual field analysis. Usually, the detection of glaucoma takes time due to anatomical changes. If the disease is detected at an early stage then it will help to curb vision loss. Here came the innovation of an AI-based system to recognize patterns of visual field changes to detect the accurate problem and reduce time to identify it. This machine learning-based pattern was very effective in recognizing 25% to 50% of the eyes indicating VF loss than any other method. 

Scientists are finding more ways to incorporate artificial intelligence in eye care. They are aiming to use machine-learning techniques and algorithmic assessments to change the perspective of the eye care industry.

AI has also paved its way to give a new outlook to eye charts. The eye chart is dated back to the 19th century, has very low precision to detect vision ie. reading of the smallest letter. Due to its single dimension, it can prove insufficient to indicate vision loss or other changes in vision. The recent developed hardware/software platform is an algorithmic framework that executes active learning algorithms on a digital screen to rationalize the evaluation of human vision.

Zhong-Lin Lu, a chief scientist at New York University Shanghai is of the view that AI unified with neuroscience can help in testing vision better than an eye chart. He also said that AI can help in personalized aid services by using active learning principles to find an individual patient reaction and then modify the treatment accordingly.

AI and Machine Learning applications have proven beneficial for the eye care sector. When it comes to health-related disorders, proven results are a must. AI has stood to show its full potential in intelligent diagnosis in Ophthalmology. 

The upcoming conference on vision science and optometry will have discussions on the latest technological advancement related to eye vision in 2020.