Amazon Increases Activity In Healthcare, Will Use Machine Learning To Mine Medical Records


Big tech companies are making a huge splash in the traditional medicine market. Earlier this week, international reports suggested that e-commerce giant Amazon was entering the medical record market by introducing a software that uses machine learning for mining. Amazon’s new product has the power to scan and understand millions of digitised patient records and make sense out of it.


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According to reports, the value delivered by the tool can be used by medical professionals to cut costs in bigger hospitals. Matt Wood, general manager of AI at Amazon Web Services, told Wall Street Journal, “We’re able to completely, automatically look inside medical language and identify patient details with incredibly high accuracy,”

Amazon is relying on deep learning as the solution. In fact, it is reported to be capable of pulling multiple data points together and put them in a report for easy consideration of medical practitioners. The pilot of the groundbreaking software was done at Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center in Seattle. The medical research facility has now dedicated about 60 people who have given the task of pulling approximately 500,000 patients’ records.

Amazon has now been very active in the healthcare market. Only last year Amazon had partnered with Berkshire Hathaway to figure out how to improve healthcare in the US. It also acquired a pharmacy startup called PillPack which specializes in home delivery of pre-packaged doses.

Big Technology Companies In Healthcare

The healthcare IT market in the US is more than $7 billion a year. This market is ripe for innovation and big technology companies look to disrupt the market with new age technologies that deliver immense value to customers. Apple also got in touch with the Department of Veterans Affairs to give access to veterans to electronic medical records and build products for them. Apple wants to simplify the process of healthcare for war veterans and also fetch itself some additional customers. Approximately 9 million veterans can bring their health records onto their iPhones under Apple’s plans. Apple looks to create special software on top of iPhone especially for VA.

Microsoft also recently open sourced FHIR (Fast Healthcare Interoperability Resources ) project. This project aims to let Azure users improve interoperability and leverage advanced machine learning for healthcare purposes. The open sourced tool will help developers to reduce the time and effort required to develop specialised healthcare services which can have machine learning components. “Fast Healthcare Interoperability Resources (FHIR) is rapidly gaining support in the healthcare community as the next generation standards framework for interoperability, and it’s clear why. FHIR provides a simpler, easier-to-learn, and pragmatic framework,” said Heather Jordan Cartwright, General Manager of Microsoft Healthcare.

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Abhijeet Katte
As a thorough data geek, most of Abhijeet's day is spent in building and writing about intelligent systems. He also has deep interests in philosophy, economics and literature.

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