Cracking The Code: Legal Hurdles For Integrating AI In Singapore

Published date01 April 2024
Subject MatterIntellectual Property, Food, Drugs, Healthcare, Life Sciences, Technology, Copyright, Patent, Biotechnology & Nanotechnology, New Technology
Law FirmWithers LLP
AuthorMr Jonathan Kok

What is next for AI in healthcare and life sciences? With generative and predictive AI playing a bigger role across the healthcare value chain – from diagnosis, population health to enterprise solutions for the delivery of care, what are the implications of AI technology for companies?

In a panel discussion hosted by Amazon Web Services (AWS), Jonathan Kok, partner and co-lead of the Withers Tech Asia team, shared his predictions from the legal and IP perspectives. Moderated by Dr Terence Tan, head of healthcare and life sciences startups at AWS, the multi-faceted panel discussion featured three other distinguished speakers: Gavin Teo, general partner at Altara Ventures, Eric Dulaurans, healthcare digital growth leader, GE Healthcare and Martin Nielsen, co-founder, Riverr.

The panellists agreed that while AI is an empowering tool that will shape the future of healthcare and life sciences, it needs to be deployed safely and responsibly. Jonathan shared four key takeaways:

Mitigating risks in AI deployment

The effectiveness of AI technology hinges on the quality of data sets used for training the AI tool. The solutions produced by AI are rooted in the patterns on which the technology is built. In instances when the generated results are inaccurate or when something goes wrong during deployment, the matter of liability comes to the forefront.

To mitigate risks, key principles which companies ought to observe for AI deployment include upholding ethical standards, ensuring the reliability of data sets and transparency in explaining how the AI tools work. Most importantly, companies should have in place a sound system to deal with misinformation or unknown outcomes.

Unlike Europe, Singapore does not have a specific law that places liability on companies that deploy AI in their systems. However, the Infocomm Media Development Authority has proposed a new Model AI Governance Framework for Generative AI in January 2024, which builds on an existing model AI governance framework released by the Personal Data Protection Commission of Singapore. The proposed framework guides companies' decision-making regarding AI deployment. For Singapore's healthcare industry specifically, companies can refer to the Artificial Intelligence in Health Guidelines published by the Ministry of Health in October 2021.

Understanding IP ownership in AI generated outputs

Laws are still catching up in relation to the ownership of IP in AI generated materials. The recent Air Canada case...

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