CVS, Microsoft partner on product development

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CVS Health will digitize its operations using services from Microsoft and co-develop health products with the tech giant to help its 30,000 employees deliver consumer care more efficiently.

The partnership, which merges Microsoft’s Azure cloud computing capabilities with CVS’s consumer healthcare services and insurance arm Aetna, was announced Thursday and comes as more healthcare companies focus more. on digitization. Insurers expect their technology budgets to grow 13.7% in 2022, with most payers aiming to invest in artificial intelligence, cloud, data privacy, and processing and analytics systems, according to Deloitte Financial Services 2022 Insurance Analysis Report.

CVS was unable to answer questions regarding the financial terms of the five-year deal, whether any employees would be made redundant and how that fits into the retail giant’s evolving business strategy. The new alliance comes just two weeks after the company announced it would close 900 stores over the next three years in a bid to reimagine what retail healthcare might look like.

“We are rapidly transforming into a consumer-centric integrated health solutions company, taking a forward-thinking, technology-first digital approach to everything we do,” said Roshan Navagamuwa, CIO of CVS, in a press release. “Business services on this scale require a new level of partnership. Our collaboration with Microsoft will accelerate this work and allow our employees to provide quality, more personal and affordable care.

Through this venture, CVS will have access to more than 1,500 business applications available through Microsoft’s Azure cloud. The company plans to combine the Microsoft Teams workflow with its retail representatives to help CVS employees answer common customer questions.

Microsoft Teams previously announced that it will work with Teladoc Health to integrate virtual care into its social messaging platform.

CVS also aims to focus on digitizing and automating its pharmacy services, with the goal of ultimately delivering personalized and convenient health recommendations to consumers. CVS has already built a platform using Microsoft’s technology that integrates patient information from CVS and uses machine learning to predict individual needs, such as sending personalized reminders to receive annual flu shots or cancer screenings, advice on medication side effects or even reminders. customers skinned for sunscreen. CVS’s ultimate goal is to use Azure’s machine learning systems to personalize and retain customers in its 10,000 retail stores.

The company has already digitized the management of 40% of its claims in specialty pharmacy.

Going forward, CVS plans to continue to deploy Microsoft Azure cloud-based computer vision and text analytics for healthcare systems across the enterprise.

The company will also explore how Microsoft’s HoloLens augmented reality smart glasses, explainer-in-the-field guides and remote support tools from Dynamics 365 Guides can make its 30,000 employees more efficient. CVS and Microsoft will work together to develop Azure AI technologies and Microsoft’s cognitive capabilities.

“We are excited to partner with CVS Health on their digital transformation journey, collaborating together on how the company manages healthcare data at scale, improves customer experience and drives operational efficiency,” said Microsoft’s chief commercial officer Judson Althoff said in a statement. “With the Azure platform and its AI capabilities, we will combine the power of data, the extended reach of world-class solutions from CVS Health and Microsoft teams to connect healthcare experts and create care and services personalized products that allow people to live healthier lives. ”

The announcement comes just weeks after Microsoft announced it had updated its healthcare-specific cloud offering to join the tech giant’s Azure, Teams and other existing services to help providers with telehealth, healthcare and healthcare. care management and patient engagement.

The company has integrated its Cloud for Healthcare service with several electronic health record systems, such as Cerner.

Truveta also recently partnered with Cloud for Healthcare to integrate anonymized patient data from the 17-hospital group into Microsoft’s suite of cloud services and products. The integration will help Truveta reach new research and pharmaceutical company clients, who could use Azure’s aggregate data and AI tools to develop new products.

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