Again, I will have to respectfully disagree. And again, I would use the cell phone as an example. The “Brick” cell phone was discontinued within a few years of its creation, but I am willing to bet you have a far more advanced and capable version of it in your pocket right now. Just because a first-generation version of a technology did not become mainstream does not mean that is the end of the story. In fact, in the case of Mcsleepy I would argue the opposite. It actually did receive FDA approval to autonomously provide anesthesia in a live surgery. I don’t think it is a stretch to worry about that fact if my job revolved around providing anesthesia.
The general trend with technology advancements is that initially it augments and later it replaces. Most likely, AI and Robotics would initially be used to automate the mundane and repetitive tasks and then at some point would entirely replace the Anesthesiologist/CRNA. I would further argue that the technology currently exists to do so. It is more of an implementation problem at this point. The reason Mcsleepy failed is because a closed loop feedback system is very rigid and rule based which is inadequate to handle the complexities of providing anesthesia. With the advances in machine learning, that limitation is no longer present. This NCIB article says as much, stating “hand dexterity” is likely the only thing that may not be able to be automated “at this time”.
I do agree with you that it is not only a technical matter but a political one as well. But I also feel the politics of it become decidedly less complicated when there is substantial financial incentive, which would be the case if Mcsleepy 5.0 proves to be cheaper with as good if not better outcomes. It wouldn’t matter how strong a single special interest lobbying group was, it would not be as strong as all the member who would profit from it.
I am not arguing that I know for a fact that it will occur within a given time frame. I am only arguing that the OP has a very legitimate concern given the interest in automating anesthesia, when coupled with the technological advances that have already occurred. I feel the only thing that can be said for certain is that Robotics and AI will drastically change a CRNA job description. Whether that is primarily augmentation or complete replacement I don’t think you nor I can say for certain.
(That being said, I am definitely rooting for you to be right about the cyborg technology assimilation )
"We always overestimate the change that will occur in the next two years and underestimate the change that will occur in the next ten. Don't let yourself be lulled into inaction." - Bill Gates