Amazon’s ‘1492’ Explores Healthcare Waters
Amazon is likening itself to Christopher Columbus, who is credited with discovering the United States in 1492. The e-commerce behemoth that is already considering selling pharmaceuticals is now looking into offering hardware and software to healthcare providers, CNBC reports.
That means Amazon, Google and Salesforce are eyeing the same e-healthcare pie.
The pharmaceutical sales may have been the first reveal of Amazon’s push into becoming a healthcare marketer, Thursday’s CNBC article surmised. In addition, Target Marketing reported on May 19 that Amazon’s entrance into the cloud put it alongside the Salesforce Health Cloud that debuted in 2015. This 1492 lab at Amazon appears to be direct competition with Salesforce’s offering of patient data collection.
That same Target Marketing article says: “CNBC reported back in early April that Google’s parent company, Alphabet, was acquiring startups in the healthcare space and eyeing top talent in life sciences and healthcare.”
CNBC says of Amazon’s 1492 lab:
The new team is currently looking at opportunities that involve pushing and pulling data from legacy electronic medical record systems. If successful, Amazon could make that information available to consumers and their doctors. It is also hoping to build a platform for telemedicine, which in turn could make it easier for people to have virtual consultations with doctors, one of the people said.
The group is also exploring health applications for existing Amazon hardware, including Echo and Dash Wand. Hospitals and doctor's offices have already dabbled in developing skills for Amazon's voice assistant Alexa, which presents a big opportunity for the e-commerce company.
CNBC notes that Amazon’s been selling medical supplies for years, and now wants to coordinate that with the pharmaceutical and 1492 efforts.
"Anyone who aspires to help consumers navigate our health system and is digitally capable should find the market conditions ripe for entry,” CNBC quotes of former White House CTO Aneesh Chopra.
What do you think, healthcare marketers?
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Related story: Amazon May Join Cloud Race for Healthcare Dollars