Using Natural Language Generation Technology to Improve Information Flows in Intensive Care Units

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

10 Citations (Scopus)


In the drive to improve patient safety, patients in modem intensive care units are closely monitored with the generation of very large volumes of data. Unless the data are further processed, it is difficult for medical and nursing staff to assimilate what is important. It has been demonstrated that data summarization in natural language has the potential to improve clinical decision making; we have implemented and evaluated a prototype system which generates such textual summaries automatically. Our evaluation of the computer generated summaries showed that the decisions made by medical and nursing staff after reading the summaries were as good as those made after viewing the currently available graphical presentations with the same information content. Since our automatically generated textual summaries can be improved by including additional content and expert knowledge, they promise to enhance information exchange between the medical and nursing staff, particularly when integrated with the currently available graphical presentations. The main feature of this technology is that it brings together a diverse set of techniques such as medical signal analysis, knowledge based reasoning, medical ontology and natural language generation. In this paper we discuss the main components of our approach with a critical analysis of their strengths and limitations and present options for improvement to address these limitations.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationECAI 2008
Subtitle of host publicationProceedings of the 18th European Conference on Artificial Intelligence
EditorsMalik Ghallab, Constantine D. Spyropoulos, Nikos Fakotakis, Nikos Avouris
Place of PublicationAmsterdam, Netherlands
PublisherIOS Press
Number of pages5
ISBN (Print)1586038915, 978-1586038915
Publication statusPublished - 31 Jul 2008
Event18th European Conference on Artificial Intelligence (ECAI 2008) - Patras, Greece
Duration: 21 Jul 200825 Jul 2008


Conference18th European Conference on Artificial Intelligence (ECAI 2008)


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