Amazon Reportedly Has A Secret Team Working On Virtual Doctor Visits, Other Medical Services

Image courtesy of Mike Seyfang

Two months after Amazon was rumored to be thinking of getting into the pharmacy business by offering customers the option of ordering their prescription drugs through the e-commerce giant’s supplier channel, the company is taking its desire to be doctor a step further, reported developing a team focused on virtual medicine. 

CNBC, citing sources close to the matter, reports that Amazon has a secret lab, dubbed 1492, that is focused on exploring, among other things, a platform for electronic medical records, health apps for devices like Echo, and telemedicine opportunities.

It’s unclear just what Amazon’s health services sector could look like in the future, but sources say the company could take on a number of roles.

Currently, the sources note that Amazon is exploring its options related to electronic medical record systems, and how it could make this information easily accessible to customers and doctors.

Another option is the creation of a platform for virtual doctor visits, called telemedicine.

Virtual doctor’s visits, aren’t a new phenomenon. Nearly three years ago, Google was reportedly running a trial of a similar system that allowed users the opportunity to discuss medical issues with doctors though online video chats.

Finally, Amazon’s stealth team is also looking at ways to make the company’s devices, including the Echo speaker, more accessible and useful to doctors.

The reported interest in the health sector comes after Amazon was rumored to be exploring an expansion into the pharmacy business.

Jumping into the medical field could prove to be a boon for Amazon, as the sector is reportedly worth $3 billion.

Amazon declined to provide comment for CNBC’s story. Consumerist has reached out to the company, and will update this post if we hear back.

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