Humana, IBM Watson to partner on AI assistant for members

Some of Humana's medical and dental members will be able to ask questions about their health plans to a virtual assistant under a new partnership with IBM Watson Health. 

Under the partnership, announced Feb. 11, Humana will use IBM Watson Assistant for Health Benefits, a cloud-based virtual assistant that uses artificial intelligence. The assistant uses chat functions to help answer questions about benefits, coverage, claims, referrals and healthcare costs.

The assistant is trained to understand health plan eligibility requirements. It will use historical claims and provider data to calculate cost estimates for certain medical services.

Humana will first offer the service to 1.3 million members with employer-based medical coverage and 1.8 million members with dental coverage through their employer.

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