- For $9 per month, Amazon will now offer Prime members access to 24/7 virtual primary healthcare services through its One Medical platform. The services range from expedited care for common concerns such as cold symptoms and skin issues, and same- or next-day remote or in-person appointments at One Medical primary care offices.1
- While the membership does provide access to in-person visits to One Medical locations across the US, such appointments will require additional payments out-of-pocket or through insurance plans.2
- The new Prime-member-only offer of $99 per year, which is cheaper than both the typical One Medical fee of $199 and the separate Amazon Prime cost of $139 annually, comes after Amazon purchased the virtual healthcare company for $3.9B earlier this year. According to one analyst, it could generate an extra 1 percentage point of revenue growth in 2026.3
- Some companies already pay the One Medical subscription for their employees, but it's unclear whether Amazon can convince Prime members to sign up themselves. Other healthcare initiatives by Amazon have already failed, including a joint venture with Berkshire Hathaway and JPMorgan Chase that ended after three years and a telehealth service called Amazon Care that closed last year.4
- The retail giant is also looking to launch Amazon Clinic, which it's currently using to test prescription medication deliveries via drone in two cities. The launch was postponed over the summer after Sens. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) and Peter Welch (D-Vt.) wrote a letter to company executives over privacy concerns, specifically noting that customers were being asked to sign away their rights to health data.2
- Amazon shares were flat on the morning of the announcement Wednesday, though the company is up 70% on the year. Its competitors in the primary care clinic industry include Costco, Walmart, and CVS.3
- Narrative A, as provided by Reuters. Unlike digital services, which have low marginal costs, Amazon's attempted entrance into the healthcare industry requires lots of skilled labor, meaning the more customers it acquires, the more doctors it will have to hire. While Amazon has historically added additional services to its membership benefits, such as streaming, the health industry beings a much higher chance of operating losses than digital products do. This is a risky bet for the Amazon empire.
- Narrative B, as provided by Forbes. There are certainly road bumps for any company entering the health industry, but Amazon's One Medical endeavors seem to have more positive potential than negative. Beyond its virtual appointment services, its gradual expansion into the pharmaceutical industry will help grow its relationships with prescribing physicians. Though all costs aren't included yet, One Medical's more than 200 primary care clinics nationwide show Amazon is poised to take over the virtual and physical healthcare spaces.