A global study has found AI can perform better than doctors at predicting mental health outcomes.

The study compared clinicians and artificial intelligence to see which is better at predicting a patient's future outcomes, including their ability to work, or create and maintain relationships.

AI outperformed humans by correctly predicting social outcomes after one year for around 83 per cent of patients, and 70 per cent of patients with recent-onset depression.

But human input remains an important part of the process, according to Professor Stephen Wood from the Clinical Translational Neuroscience at Orygen Youth Mental Health Centre.

“In our study, we showed that our experts, if they said somebody was going to have a poor outcome, they were usually right, but they missed a lot of people who did go on to have poor outcomes,” Professor Wood told the ABC.

“What we are doing now is going back and collecting a new sample to check that this pattern really does predict the future for these kinds of presentations for these young people.

“The human intervention part is really important.

“What we are most likely to end up doing is telling clinicians: This is our best guess of the outcome for this young person — take that on board when you're discussing treatment options.”

The full report is accessible here.