In recent months we’ve seen grocery companies intermingle their businesses with pharmacy companies, which are also looking to drive business with in-store medical clinics. With rising labor costs and other inputs, both grocery and pharmacies are turning to technology to drive their capabilities and services to foster traffic and sale as well as restrain costs if not drive them lower. We are now seeing artificial intelligence and augmented reality, aspects of our Disruptive Innovators investing theme, starting to be introduced into their effort to capture revenue and profits.
Two Safeway stores in the Phoenix area are now offering artificial intelligence-powered medical clinics through a partnership with Akos Med Clinic.
This first-of-its-kind clinic utilizes technology developed by AdviNOW Medical so that many common conditions, such as sinus infections, earaches, sore throats, rashes, UTIs, strains and sprains, can be quickly and effectively treated.
As patients sit in front of a computer screen and simple-to-use, FDA-approved medical devices, they are guided by AR on how to collect their own data, such as weight, temperature, blood pressure and blood oxygen content, as well as ear, nose and throat images and chest, lung and abdomen sounds. Follow-up questions are asked until a diagnosis can be made, with the total process typically taking less than 15 minutes.
The data collected is then sent electronically to an Akos healthcare provider, who will then video chat with the patient to confirm the AI-collected information, verify the diagnosis and confirm or change the treatment plan. A healthcare professional will also be on-site if assistance is needed.
The AI also sends the prescription and/or test orders to the appropriate healthcare partner, and will follow up with the patient to check health status and schedule a follow-up visit, if needed.