Amazon has launched a new service that uses machine learning to extract key data from patient records and can potentially help healthcare providers and researchers save money, make treatment decisions, and manage clinical trials. The company announced the service, called Amazon Comprehend Medical
Amazon’s other recent forays into healthcare include paying almost $1 billion to acquire online prescription service PillPack
It joins other large tech companies that are increasingly focused on healthcare. For example, earlier this year Apple launched a feature that lets customers view their hospital medical records on their iPhones, while Google recently hired former Geisinger CEO David Feinberg to unify and lead the healthcare initiatives across its businesses, including search, Google Brain, Google Fit, and Nest.
Of course, the uploading of medical records to the cloud for machine-learning analysis might questions from patients about how Comprehend Medical will ensure their privacy. Amazon says patient data is encrypted and can only be unlocked by customers who have a key, and that no data processed will be stored or used for training its algorithms. Comprehend Medical complies with the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA).