Having information at your fingertips is a blessing and a curse at times. It’s great if you want to find out what’s going on quickly, but it can deliver woefully incorrect details when you look up medical conditions.
A Google search should never substitute a visit to a healthcare facility, but going to the doctor’s office isn’t always practical. So, if you would like to have your medical advice dispensed with a slice of technology, there is a way to do that.
Read on to see how Amazon makes it easier to get in touch with a doctor.
Here’s the backstory
Many people turn to the internet to self-diagnose a condition that’s been bothering them. A quick search could give you general indications of your ailment, but it won’t always be accurate.
If you have an Amazon Echo device, though, you can use it for a virtual consultation through Teladoc. The company partnered with Amazon in the U.S. to make doctor consultations a lot easier, as you don’t have to travel beyond the reach of your Echo device.
Teladoc describes itself as a “whole-person virtual care solution” that uses proprietary health signals to integrate with devices like Amazon’s Echo.
How to get medical advice through Amazon’s Alexa
Getting medical advice through an Echo is similar to how you would ask the device for anything else. By simply saying the keyphrase “Alexa, I want to talk to a doctor,” the software will contact a healthcare provider. You will then be called back on the Echo.
But the service should never be used for anything serious, as it’s only for non-emergency consultations. Currently, the service only supports audio, but there are plans to incorporate video calls in the future.
The Teladoc feature is available on Amazon Echo, Echo Dot, and Echo Show devices in the U.S. When a consultation request is made, you need to have your insurance details and medical history on hand. For those that don’t have medical insurance, the consultation will cost $75.
This is not the first time Amazon has stepped into the medical field. It owns Amazon Care, a telehealth product available to Amazon workers.