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Quick Hits: New Features Turn Amazon’s Alexa into a Pharmacist

Amazon’s virtual assistant can now order prescription refills and instruct patients when to take their medications.

A recent GeekWire article discussed the latest feature added to Amazon’s Alexa. Apparently the virtual assistant can now order prescription refills and remind people to take their medicine. To add this functionality, the eCommerce giant teamed up with pharmaceutical automation company Omnicell and Giant Eagle, a large pharmacy chain. The initial launch with Giant Eagle will serve as a learning period before the program is extended to more pharmacies next year.

Because Alexa will be handling sensitive information, Amazon is requiring users to create a password attached to their Alexa Voice Profile, and voice interactions are redacted in the all to maintain privacy. This move is the latest in Amazon’s aggressive entry into the healthcare industry. In September, Amazon launched Amazon Care, a primary care service for its employees, and earlier this month it re-branded its recently-acquired online pharmacy, PillPack.

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