Amazon established a virtual health clinic with in-home follow-ups called Amazon Care for employees in Seattle.
The information can be found on a website called Amazon.care. On the website, the program is described as “a benefit being piloted for Amazon employees and their families in the Seattle area.”
It can be accessed by the public but Amazon has not made the news available outside of the company.
In 2018, it was speculated that Amazon was planning to build a clinic for its employees with the pilot testing happening in its Seattle headquarters. It would involve a small number of doctors to start a pilot clinic for a selected group of Amazon employees.
The speculation slowly turned into reality with the hiring of Dr. Martin Levine, who ran Iora Health’s Seattle-based clinics, last summer.
With Amazon Care, it gives employees virtual health offerings including an in-app video visit with a healthcare professional like a doctor, registered nurse, or nurse practitioner. Employees can seek advice, diagnosis, answers, treatments, or referrals.
Amazon employees are also given the chance to choose whether they want to see a healthcare provider through the website or mobile app. They can also send an SMS to a nurse regarding any health topic.
If there is a need, Amazon Care can make the necessary arrangements for a nurse to come to visit an employee’s home. Through the program, prescribed medications can be delivered within a span of a few hours. Employees also have the option to pick the medications from their preferred pharmacy.
A company spokesperson has confirmed the pilot testing of Amazon Care.
“We’re currently piloting a healthcare benefit designed to help Amazon employees get fast access to healthcare without an appointment, at the convenience of their schedules, at their preferred location (home, office, or virtual). Amazon Care eliminates travel and wait time, connecting employees and their family members to a physician or nurse practitioner through live chat or video, with the option for in-person follow up services from a registered nurse ranging from immunizations to instant strep throat detection,” said a spokesperson from Amazon.
According to information sent to Amazon employees, the company described the program as something designed to help workers and their families have access to a healthcare provider at any location and in real-time.
Seattle-based Amazon employees and their eligible dependents who are on approved health plans can download the Amazon Care app from the Google Play Store or the App Store. If they meet all the requirements, they are eligible to request an invitation to join the program.
Amazon Care is not the first time that Amazon has looked into improving its health care program for its employees.
In 2018, Amazon partnered with Berkshire Hathaway and J.P. Morgan in a non-profit project called Haven. The goal of this venture involves improving health care for 1.2 million employees of all three companies.
Haven has its pharmacy group under PillPack and a research and development group called Grand Challenge or 1492.
With Amazon Care, the American multinational technology company has the opportunity to make moves towards telemedicine.
By starting a clinic, Amazon has the chance to take advantage of testing new health care products. This would let them focus on health care costs and new products for the general public.
According to Glen Tullman, the executive chairman of a health-care company called Livongo: “Amazon is a company that is experimenting a lot with a variety of opportunities in health care. It’s one to watch.”