Apple & Google Are Jumping Into Healthcare: Should Amazon Join the Game?

Gerd's Reads , Medical and Health , Updates

Like other major retailers, Amazon might be lured to health care by the promise of new Obamacare customers and the industry’s existing, often dysfunctional markets. For instance, Walgreen took the unusual step of launching accountable care organizations — centered around three of their pharmacies — through an Affordable Care Act pilot program.

And Walmart this year began rolling out its own primary-care clinics. Compared to traditional health care organizations, companies like Walgreen and Walmart think that their expertise managing a storefront will give them an edge when it comes to patient access. And of course, a big-box store like Walmart has a physical presence that enables cross-sell opportunities, like buying medical supplies or making a visit to an on-site clinic.

Amazon can’t compete there, but the company can bring lessons to connecting with consumers and understanding their behavior — a valuable competency as many patients’ care can increasingly be managed from a distance and through a computer. Amazon also could play a bigger role in prescription-drug distribution, too.

Is Amazon becoming “too connected” to every industry? Let us know what you think in the comments.

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Gerd Leonhard

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