Amazon, Mayo team to bring basic treatment info in the home

Alexa to serve as a digital assistant that offers self-care instructions for non-urgent injuries.

Amazon Alexa, the wireless digital assistant that can perform a multitude of tasks via simple voice commands from a user, now offers access to first aid treatment with self-care instructions using content from the Mayo Clinic.

The free service is a new “skill” or capability—built by Mayo—that an individual can add to Amazon Alexa devices.

An individual can tell Alexa to “open Mayo First-Aid” and then ask a question, such as how to treat a burn or a child’s fever. Alexa pulls the information from Mayo content and delivers appropriate directions.

The service is available on Alexa devices such as Amazon Echo, Echo Dot and Amazon Tap, among others.

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“This is the first health guidance skill Mayo Clinic has developed and launched for Amazon Alexa,” says Sandhya Pruthi, MD, an internist and associate medical director at Mayo Clinic Global Business Solutions. “Voice-enabled experience is a new and growing channel for reaching people and delivering information they are seeking, whether or not they have an existing relationship with Mayo Clinic.”

Mayo emphasizes the new Amazon Alexa first aid service should not be used in life-threatening or emergency situations, because those individuals need immediate medical assistance.

WebMD in March 2017 launched its own personal health digital assistant with Amazon Alexa. And Boston Children’s Hospital offers its own version of Alexa, called KidsMD.

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