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Microsoft, Walgreens Take Aim At Amazon And Team Up On Health Care

The companies announced they're partnering on digital health initiatives focused on improving the cost and quality of care.
Posted at 6:50 PM, Jan 15, 2019

Microsoft and Walgreens are joining forces on a variety of digital health care initiatives. 

The companies announced Tuesday that a new seven-year partnership will use Microsoft's cloud and other technologies to better the health care experience in Walgreens' thousands of stores. 

According to Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella, the "strategic partnership" will aim to improve "health outcomes while lowering the cost of care" for consumers. 

As part of the deal, Walgreens will test out 12 "digital health corners" in its locations this year, focused on selling health care-related devices. 

But it looks like the move might have another purpose, too: taking aim at Amazon's growing influence over the health domain. 

The online retail giant acquired online pharmacy PillPack last year as it looks to venture into the prescription drug market. 

And the industry is taking notice. 

Last year, CVS completed its acquisition of health insurance company Aetna, while both CVS and Walgreens launched next-day prescription delivery services. 

The Microsoft-Walgreens agreement will also make Microsoft the drugstore chain's cloud provider. 

Additional reporting from Newsy affiliate CNN