Tim Tai, Senior Photographer

The School of Medicine is set to unveil a new online certificate program on medical software and artificial intelligence.

Scheduled for launch in March 2024 by the medical school’s Section of Biomedical Informatics and Data Science at the School of Medicine, the new 16-week program will be titled “Medical Software and Medical Artificial Intelligence” and will be directed by Xenophon Papademetris, a professor of biomedical informatics & data science at the School of Medicine. The certificate program is intended to help educate medical professionals to better engage with the evolving use of technology in the healthcare industry.

“As technology continues to advance, the need for professionals well-versed in the intricacies of medical software and AI becomes paramount,” Papademetris said. “This course is not just about acquiring knowledge; it’s about fostering leaders who can bridge disciplinary gaps and contribute meaningfully to the intersection of technology and healthcare.” 

According to Papademetris, the program traces its roots back to 2017, when he first taught the undergraduate “Medical Software Design” class. Papademetris also developed a companion Yale Coursera Course titled “Introduction to Medical Software,” which has enrolled over 17,000 students worldwide.

The course aims to address the growing demand for professionals capable of navigating medical software design, AI integration and regulatory compliance in the health and technology fields, he said.

The certificate program will span four consecutive modules using a combination of prerecorded videos, quizzes and live Zoom sessions with industry experts: an introduction to medical software, an introduction to artificial intelligence, a class on the use of AI in medical software and a module about the developing role of AI in medicine. 

According to Dennis Shung, an assistant professor of medicine who helps teach the last module, the certificate program is targeted toward career professionals, including software engineers, data scientists, regulatory professionals and doctors interested in healthcare technology.

“[The course will] level up people who are already in the industry who have already demonstrated interest in medical software and AI,” he said.

Mary-Anne Hartley, an assistant professor of biomedical informatics and data science and an instructor in the program, also hopes that the modules will help students cultivate ethical and effective use of AI tools in healthcare.

In the fourth module of the course, for instance, the program’s students will see examples of these tools’ application at Yale and in a global health setting by Hartley’s ongoing work in Zanzibar.

“This course exposes people to the need, potential and opportunity for them to recognize the importance and responsibility to make or use technology for patients in low resource settings,” Hartley said. “People have to be able to represent patients better and use technology specific for certain target patient groups.”

According to Papademetris, the certificate’s faculty are full-time professors at Yale from various departments, including radiology, biostatistics, emergency medicine and sociology. Applications for the program are set to open in January 2024.

“Since everyone cannot come to Yale, Yale can go there,” Papademetris told the News.

The School of Medicine was founded in 1810.