Can You Trust Alexa or Siri For CPR? Research Says No

CPR, Alexa, Siri, Research

What about CPR? Voice assistants like Google Assistant, Siri, and Alexa can aid with topics like the weather and food.

Perhaps not, according to a recent study.

According to a study released on Monday, just 59% of voice assistant responses genuinely contained knowledge about cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR). Only roughly one-third of the instructions were for CPR.

“We found that when we asked questions related to cardiopulmonary resuscitation to AI voice assistants, (the answers) really lacked relevance and even came back with inconsistencies,” said lead study author Dr. Adam Landman, chief information officer and senior vice president of digital at Mass General Brigham and an attending
emergency physician.

The Research

According to the study, researchers posed eight queries on CPR instructions to Amazon Alexa on the Echo Show 5, Apple Siri on the iPhone, Google Assistant on the Nest Mini, and Microsoft Cortana on a Windows 10 laptop.

“This is an important study for us as an organization to help us determine how to better work with VA device manufacturers and as we enter into the world of AI to make sure credible organizations like the AHA are the top answers given by these devices,” said Dr. Comilla Sasson, vice president for science and innovation at the American Heart Association and a practicing emergency medicine physician. Sasson was not involved in the research.

The Responses

The American Heart Association advises phoning emergency services for assistance, yet only nine out of 32 responses mentioned doing so. Only 12% of the 32 responses from voice assistants offered spoken instructions; several voice assistants instead directed users to web pages that detailed CPR.

The study found that two emergency medicine specialists with board certification evaluated the responses’ correctness using transcripts

According to the study, less than half of the voice assistants’ responses were relevant to CPR. This contained details about the film “CPR” and a hyperlink to Colorado Public Radio News.

Only 28% of the responses recommended dialing 911. Just 34% of participants taught CPR, and just 12% provided vocal training.