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NHS teams up with Amazon

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NHS teams up with Amazon
FILE PHOTO: Prompts on how to use Amazon's Alexa personal assistant are seen in an Amazon ‘experience center’ in Vallejo, California, U.S., May 8, 2018. REUTERS/Elijah Nouvelage/File Photo   -   Copyright  Elijah Nouvelage(Reuters)
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(Reuters) – Britain’s National Health Service is teaming up with Amazon <AMZN.O> to provide health information through the tech giant’s voice assistant Alexa, the government said on Wednesday.

The technology is aimed at helping patients – especially the elderly, blind and those unable to access the Internet through traditional means – to quickly get information verified by the health service through voice commands.

Amazon’s algorithm uses information from the NHS website to provide answers to voice questions such as “Alexa, how do I treat a migraine?” or “Alexa, what are the symptoms of flu?”

The technology could reduce pressure on the NHS and general practitioners by providing information on common illnesses, the statement said. The NHS, which has been plagued by budget cuts, provides free access to care for residents in Britain.

(Reporting by Noor Zainab Hussain in Bengaluru, editing by Deepa Babington)

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