Amazon has a secret health tech lab called 1492 which explores various areas such as telemedicine, medical record data and health apps for devices like Amazon Echo. The secret skunkworks is dedicated to opportunities in new areas in electronic medical reads and has a headquarter in Seattle. The project focuses on both software and hardware.
Amazon is increasing its interest in exploring new businesses in healthcare. For instance, it has another unit exploring the sale of pharmaceuticals. The new team is looking at opportunities involving pulling and pushing data from electronic medical record systems.
When the project is complete, Amazon will make information available to doctors and their patients. It is a means of building a platform for telemedicine which can make it easier for people to enjoy virtual consultations with their doctors.
The group is exploring other health applications for existing Amazon hardware such as Dash Wand and Echo. Most hospitals and doctors have already dabbled in developing skills for the voice assistant Alexa which is a great opportunity for e-commerce.
It remains unclear whether the company is building any new health devices. However, sources have already ruled out that option. Amazon has been advertising new roles for the stealth operation which people can search on the jobs websites under the keyword “a1.492.” some job posts have described the position as a special projects team or the Amazon grand challenge.
The unit has been posting ads for UX Design Manager for the new vertical and the machine learning director with healthcare IT experience, knowledge of electronic medical records and analytics. Some members of that team have an affiliation with a1.492 on LinkedIn. Some of the people already involved include two strategic initiative leads, two machine learning experts, and a UX designer. The experts are running projects in the group, eg. Cameron Charles and Kristen Helton.
Other teams are working in life and health sciences in Amazon. The cloud operation has a team of health experts to match Google and Microsoft for contracts with large pharmaceutical vendors and hospitals. Amazon has invested in startup companies like Grail that has a special interest in the cloud business.
The company is taking advantage of opportunities in the $3 trillion sectors and is directly involved in the sale of medical supplies for years. The market has many opportunities, and Amazon will capitalize on the efforts to digitize health operations.