Amazon to shut down its telehealth offering


Amazon will shutter Amazon Care, the virtual and in-home health service it initially created for its employees, by the end of this year.

People who work at Amazon Care learned the news in a meeting on Wednesday, according to two people with knowledge of the matter, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because they signed nondisclosure agreements.

Amazon Care is available to the employees of half a dozen corporate customers including Hilton, Silicon Labs, Precor, and Amazon-owned Whole Foods, as well as its own workforce. Workers were told the service was shutting down because those customers did not see the value in the service, one of the people said. Dozens of employees will lose their jobs at the end of the year, according to the people.

Amazon spokeswoman Christina Smith confirmed the decision and shared a memo announcing it with The Washington Post.

“This decision wasn’t made lightly and only became clear after many months of careful consideration,” said Amazon senior vice president of health Neil Lindsay in an email to staff. “Although our enrolled members have loved many aspects of Amazon Care, it is not a complete enough offering for the large enterprise customers we have been targeting, and wasn’t going to work long-term.”

Amazon founder Jeff Bezos owns The Post. Amazon first provided the letter announcing the closure to GeekWire and Fierce Healthcare.

Amazon’s health ambitions sometimes clashed with best health practices

The decision to shutter Amazon Care is a surprise given Amazon CEO Andy Jassy’s commitment to expanding Amazon’s health-care investment. It follows Amazon’s $3.9 billion acquisition of concierge health care start-up One Medical last month, a deal that could still face antitrust scrutiny from the Federal Trade Commission.

In his 2021 letter to shareholders, Jassy named Amazon Care as an example of the “type of iterative innovation” that is “pervasive across every team at Amazon.”

Amazon Care is currently available virtually nationwide, and was supposed to expand to 20 cities for in-home care delivered by mobile health nurses by the end of this year.

Last week, The Post reported on tensions between Amazon Care and the clinical staff the company brought on to treat patients. Those medical professionals work for an independent company called Care Medical that is also being shut down. Six former employees told The Post that the two sides clashed over Amazon’s fast and frugal approach to expanding Amazon Care, which some former employees felt prioritized the business over best medical practice.

Amazon will see you now: Tech giant buys health-care chain for $3.9 billion

A former Amazon Care executive told The Post at the time that Amazon was going to “try to do what they do in every other line of business: They’re going to try and make it better than everyone else, make…

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