Amazon acknowledged this problem on Monday at an event called the “diabetes challenge,” where it worked with a series of partners to promote use-cases for Alexa for patients with diabetes. The finalists include a personal assistant or coach for patients with diabetes, and a virtual nutrition assistant.
For the challenge, Amazon is partnered up with the drug maker Merck and strategy firm Luminary Labs.
At the event, Amazon Web Services’ health lead Oxana Pickeral publicly acknowledged the gap — and implied that Amazon would be taking steps to fix it.
“While Alexa and Lex (the technology powering Alexa) are not HIPAA-eligible, this (challenge) has provided us an opportunity to envision what is possible,” she said.
It’s worth noting that it took some time for Amazon Web Services, its cloud service, to become compliant so it could work with covered entities that manage personal health information. But now, it is the dominant cloud provider for health care.