WebMD comes to Amazon Alexa

Amazon Alexa Echo

WebMD is integrating with Amazon Alexa allowing users to ask questions about health-related topics, including conditions, drugs, medical tests, side effects, symptoms and treatments. In response, WebMD will provide physician-reviewed, medically appropriate answers in plain, accessible language.

“WebMD is committed to providing consumers with health information that they can trust whenever and wherever they need it, and voice represents a promising new communication channel,” WebMD CEO Steve Zatz said in a statement. “We’re happy to be working with Amazon to increase access to trusted health care information.”

Users of Alexa-enabled devices, such as Amazon Echo, Echo Dot, Amazon Fire TV and others, can access WebMD’s library of health information once they have enabled the skill, which is as easy as saying, “Alexa, enable WebMD skill.” Once enabled, users can ask different kind of questions, such as:

  • “Alexa, ask WebMD to tell me about type 2 diabetes.”
  • “Alexa, ask WebMD to tell me about amoxicillin.”
  • “Alexa, ask WebMD what is an echocardiogram.”
  • “Alexa, ask WebMD what are the side effects of steroids.”
  • “Alexa, ask WebMD what are the symptoms of a heart attack.”
  • “Alexa, ask WebMD how to treat a sore throat.”
  • “Alexa, ask WebMD what I can eat after a workout.”

In addition to providing answers via voice, WebMD gives users the opportunity to request that additional information be sent in text form to their Alexa app. If they opt to do so, a card containing the original answer to their question and a URL where they can find more information on WebMD.com will appear in their Alexa app.

“With the WebMD skill, customers can get answers to health questions simply by asking Alexa. It highlights the convenience of a more natural spoken language experience,” Rob Pulciani, Director of Amazon Alexa, said in a statement.