Amazon has recently partnered with healthcare consultancy company Arcadia Group to release a new line of consumer-oriented medical devices, including blood pressure cuffs and blood sugar monitors. These products will be sold exclusively through Amazon and follows their recent endeavors to sell exclusive Amazon product lines such as AmazonBasics, as well as their increasing involvement in healthcare products.
The two have decided to name these products under Choice brand and will be focusing primarily on digital health tools. Amazon has already launched their basic and wireless glucose monitors, as well as blood pressure cuffs that can attach to either the wrist or upper arm on their site. These devices couple with Amazon’s unique app that allows users to access their physiological data and provides them with reminders. The app generates descriptive and understandable data in the form of graphs and allows users to share data with their smartphones as well.
“The Choice brand is all about accessible wellness. Consumers no longer need to drive to a store to stand in-line and purchase their medical devices and supplies,” said Arcadia Group CEO, Bob Guest, in a statement. “Now, in the privacy of their home, consumers can review, compare and purchase the products of their choice. No insurance is required. Therefore, customers have the freedom of choice. They will no longer be told by their insurance company what brand they can buy. Choice is freedom.”
Guest stated that Arcadia will retain ownership of the Choice products, but they will be sold exclusively through Amazon.
This news comes in the wake of several healthcare-oriented moves from Amazon. The company acquired virtual pharmacy PillPack just months ago, a move likely indicative of Amazon’s interest in expanding into the prescription medicine industry. Last year, Amazon closed a deal with Berkshire Hathaway and JPMorgan in which the three decided to create a healthcare nonprofit focused on technology to increase customer satisfaction and reduce costs. This past summer, the partnership announced Dr. Atul Gawande to be CEO of the Boston-based nonprofit. Gawande is a renowned surgeon at Brigham and Women’s Hospital and a Professor in Harvard’s Chan School of Public Health.
Though Choice is currently only offering the blood sugar monitoring devices and blood pressure cuffs, they plan to expand their product line to include more consumer products. The Choice website even has a page that allows users to vote on which products they would like to be on the market next, with options including insulin, heart rate monitors, and lancets. Guest also stated that Arcadia and Amazon plan to, “incorporate voice-driven measurement interpretation as well as individualize wellness recommendations,” services that will be available through Amazon’s Alexa. This builds on Alexa’s potential impact in healthcare, with its voice recognition AI potentially being linked with FDA approved apps and aspects of healthcare such as physician dictation, senior care, and patient evaluation.
In a press release from Choice, the company claims their product lines will incorporate both conventional and Bluetooth-wireless models. They claim their brand is “positioned to offer exceptional value versus what is available at traditional retail pharmacy outlets.”