Amazon Wants You to Use Alexa to Track Health Care

The Wall Street Journal featured Livongo’s new HIPAA-compliant Amazon Alexa healthcare skill.

April 7, 2019 by: Melanie Evans

Amazon.com Inc. Ais positioning Alexa, its artificial-intelligence assistant, to track consumers’ prescriptions and relay personal health information, in a bid to insert the technology into everyday health care.

Seattle-based Amazon says Alexa can now transfer sensitive, personal health information using software that meets health-privacy requirements under federal law. Five companies, including insurerCigna Corp. , diabetes-management company Livongo Health Inc. and major hospital systems, said they developed new Alexa features for consumers using the federal protocol. The features let Alexa perform tasks such as scheduling urgent-care appointments, tracking when drugs are shipped, checking health-insurance benefits or reading blood-sugar results.

For developers of digital health services, the move opens an avenue to expand the use of voice commands. Smart speakers have proliferated rapidly since their 2014 introduction, with one in five adults reporting they owned at least one in a 2018 national survey by Edison Research and NPR.

Read the Wall Street Journal’s full story featuring Livongo’s new Amazon Alexa healthcare skill here.