Productivity Inquiry Interim Report 1 – The Key to Prosperity

While Australia rapidly adapted to new technologies and processes during the COVID-19 pandemic, there is still some way to go in the transition to a data driven economy. With a drop in migration over recent years and decreased global human capital mobility, Australia has not been subject to previous levels of skills exchange and best practice knowledge transfer to boost innovation and digital capability.

There are, however, some sectors of the economy that are transitioning at a more rapid pace than others. For example, the healthcare sector has demonstrated its ability to innovate and use technology to improve patient care. A panel of healthcare experts at the Australian Investment Council’s annual conference in September 2022 cited that Artificial Intelligence (AI) will likely inform every decision in relation to healthcare in the future, for example, in diagnosing X-rays, identifying vulnerable patients and using apps to predict illnesses such as COVID. Although, the panel concurred AI is not yet at a sufficient scale to deliver more time to nurses or reduce costs for patients. Adequate data captue is key to ensuring the benefits of new technologies can be passed on to patients through more personalised diagnoses and therapeutics.

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