Amazon is taking a step further into the healthcare industry by adding video telemedicine visits to its virtual clinic, which is now available in all 50 states. The e-commerce giant launched the virtual clinic last fall, initially offering text message-based consultations.
The virtual clinic covers over 30 common health conditions, including sinus infections, acne, COVID
-19, acid reflux, and various sexual health conditions. It also offers emergency contraception and birth control. The average cost for a messaging consultation is $35, whilst video visits are priced at $75, providing a cost-effective solution, particularly for those uninsured or with high deductibles.
Amazon's Chief Medical Officer, Dr. Nworah Ayogu, explained the clinic's goal is to remove healthcare barriers, aiding individuals in effectively addressing their daily health concerns. However, the potential fragmentation of care and difficulties in tracking patient health are concerns raised by some doctors.
Amazon's growing presence in the healthcare industry includes selling prescription drugs through Amazon Pharmacy and the recent $3.9 billion acquisition of One Medical, a membership-based primary care provider. Anti-monopoly groups and critics expressed concerns about patient privacy and Amazon's increasing market dominance.
CEO Andy Jassy, who succeeded Jeff Bezos in 2021, views the healthcare sector as a significant growth opportunity for the company.