Amazon has launched a virtual platform called Amazon Clinic, where customers can connect with healthcare providers to treat common conditions like allergies, acne and hair loss.
The new service, which is being offered in 32 states, currently does not accept insurance. Customers, however, can use their own insurance to help pay for medications prescribed by a licensed clinician. That said, pricing is expected to vary depending on providers.
The move to launch Amazon Clinic follows the eCommerce giants’ previous efforts to expand its presence in healthcare. In 2018, Amazon purchased a prescription delivery and price-comparison site called PillPack. Later the company launched Amazon Pharmacy, allowing users to buy prescription drugs.
The new initiative follows Amazon’s decision to shut down its other Telehealth service, Amazon Care, by the end of 2022. Amazon Care originally launched in 2019 as a pilot program for employees that offered both virtual urgent care and in-home care where nurses could perform testing and vaccinations for a fee.
The company discontinued the service because it was seen not seen as complete enough for large enterprise customers Amazon had been targeting and was not “going to work long-term,” Amazon Health Services Senior Vice President Neil Lindsay noted.
In the coming months, Amazon is working to close its $3.49 billion deal to buy One Medical, which will allow the company to further expand its virtual healthcare presence and open physical doctors’ offices for the first time.