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“Chat GPT for medical practice websites - what medical practices need to consider”

Ben Ryan, Avant Law - Senior Associate, Commercial & Corporate

Sunday, 5 November 2023

chat gpt

ChatGPT has been making waves across all areas of life, from best man speeches and Thursday night dinner ideas, right through to business information. As the media has enjoyed reporting, the quality of its uses has varied in each of the ways it is used. One of the areas that has had particularly varied opinions and success rates is the use of ChatGPT, or other AI content generation tools to generate text, information and other content to include on business websites.

In this article we consider some factors medical practices should consider and be cautious of when using these tools to generate content for their practice website.

Copyright issues

One the biggest issue identified when ChatGPT and other AI tools came to prominence is the big question: who owns the copyright? While the answer to that question can be subject to different interpretations and different copyright laws across jurisdictions, there is one thing that is clear - businesses using AI generated content do not have the certainty of knowing they own the copyright in the content on their own website.

In fact, given the way AI tools gather information from existing sources and reinterpret it in their response, it is possible that AI produced content could, of itself, include someone else’s copyrighted material. This means if a business were to use the content on their website, they could inadvertently be breaching another person’s copyright.

Additionally, businesses should review their website terms of use / terms and conditions to ensure they are not inappropriately claiming (or in some cases not claiming) copyright ownership of the content. If you are engaging a lawyer to assist with drafting or reviewing these terms, it is important to highlight that you intend to use AI generated content on your website so your lawyer can ensure this is properly considered.

Accuracy of information

The biggest downfall of ChatGPT is that it simply repurposes existing content and does not verify that the end result is accurate. In fact, if the content it is repurposing is not correct, then this error is likely to pull through into the produced material. Businesses using AI to generate their website content must be very careful to review the material to ensure its accuracy.

This is particularly important for medical practices given the importance and sensitivity of the content that is often displayed on their websites and the effects that could occur if incorrect medical information was shared with the public via that website.

Correctly portraying the business of the medical practice

When providing instructions to AI tools to create content, and then also when reviewing the material the AI produces, it is very difficult to ensure that the nuances of the business’s particular corporate structure is considered.

Let’s use the example of a medical practice which is not providing medical services directly to the public, but instead is being engaged to provide services to medical practitioners. ChatGPT may not properly understand this nuance and may incorrectly provide content which incorrectly implies or states that the doctor’s patients are patients of the medical practice. Phrases that it may use when it misunderstands the relationship between the various parties could include:

  • “Our patients”
  • “Our Doctors”
  • “Our Team”
  • “The Doctors working for our practice”.

Ensuring that the way a practice represents itself to the public is not misconstrued by their website is particularly an important consideration in relation to payroll tax.

Similar issues could occur if the AI tool misunderstands the speciality of the practitioners which engage the medical practice and could be providing information which is not actually within the area of speciality of those practitioners.

Third party content

If a website contains content that is generated by AI tools (or has any other type of content that is not directly created by the business), then it is important to ensure this is considered in the website’s terms of use / terms and conditions. This type of content should be appropriately acknowledged in those policies.

We can help you

If you have any questions, or would like more information about how we can assist you or your practice, please call 1800 867 113, or to organise a confidential discussion at a time that suits you, please click here 

About the author

Ben Ryan

Ben Ryan is a Senior Associate in the commercial and corporate law practice at Avant Law, based in Brisbane. Ben has been working with medical practices since 2013. Ben works primarily on commercial structuring and intellectual property matters to help clients achieve strategic and commercially sensible results. He pursued a career in law to provide reliable and honest support to those in need of legal assistance and enjoys working with clients to develop solutions-oriented legal strategy and advice.

Disclaimers

The information in this article does not constitute legal advice or other professional advice and should not be relied upon as such. It is intended only to provide a summary and general overview on matters of interest and it is not intended to be comprehensive. You should seek legal or other professional advice before acting or relying on any of this content. The information in this article is current to 8 November 2023. Liability limited by a scheme approved under Professional Standards Legislation. Legal practitioners employed by Avant Law Pty Limited are members of the scheme. © Avant Mutual Group Limited 2023.

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