Amazon Alexa is now serving health advice from NHS’s website in the UK, which — according to the government — could reduce demand on the NHS.
The partnership was first announced last year and now talks are underway with other companies, like Microsoft, to set up similar arrangements.
Under the deal, Alexa will rely on information from the NHS website to provide answers to questions such as, “How do I treat a migraine?” and, “What are the symptoms of chickenpox?”
“We want to empower every patient to take better control of their healthcare,” Health Secretary Matt Hancock told BBC.
Amazon on its end was quick to point out that no user information will ever be shared with third parties. Also, the company said it will not use the data to build a profile on customers.
The move comes on the heels of the UK government’s initiative to boost the use of digital technologies in the health service. For that purpose, a special unit was set up called NHSX.
Among the measures already being pursued are an expansion of electronic prescribing and the use of artificial intelligence to analyse scans.