NEW YORK, March 7, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- WebMD (NASDAQ: WBMD), the leading source of health information, just made it easier for consumers to get answers to their health-related questions. Beginning today, users of Amazon Alexa devices can ask questions about health-related topics, including conditions, drugs, medical tests, side effects, symptoms and treatments. In response, WebMD will provide physician-reviewed, medically appropriate answers in plain, accessible language.
"WebMD is committed to providing consumers with health information that they can trust whenever and wherever they need it, and voice represents a promising new communication channel," said WebMD Chief Executive Officer Steve Zatz. "We're happy to be working with Amazon to increase access to trusted health care information."
Users of Alexa-enabled devices, such as Amazon Echo, Echo Dot, Amazon Fire TV and others, can access WebMD's library of health information once they have enabled the skill, which is as easy as saying, "Alexa, enable WebMD skill." Once enabled, users can ask questions in a variety of different ways to get an easy-to-understand answer. For example, questions may include:
"Alexa, ask WebMD to tell me about type 2 diabetes."
"Alexa, ask WebMD to tell me about amoxicillin."
"Alexa, ask WebMD what is an echocardiogram."
"Alexa, ask WebMD what are the side effects of steroids."
"Alexa, ask WebMD what are the symptoms of a heart attack."
"Alexa, ask WebMD how to treat a sore throat."
"Alexa, ask WebMD what I can eat after a workout."
To learn how WebMD's new skill works on Alexa, visit https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01MRM361G/.
"Every month, nearly one-third of the total online U.S. population turns to WebMD's websites and apps in search of answers to their health-related questions, but now they have another option – and it's as simple as asking Alexa," said WebMD Vice President Ben Greenberg, whose product team developed the new voice capabilities. "There are a number of reasons that voice-enabled interfaces are growing in popularity – they are generally hands-free, people can talk faster than they type, and when done right, they make it easier for consumers to quickly and easily get to the information they need."
In addition to providing answers via voice, WebMD gives users the opportunity to request that additional information be sent in text form to their Alexa app. If they opt to do so, a card containing the original answer to their question and a URL where they can find more information on WebMD.com will appear in their Alexa app.
"We're excited that WebMD is bringing its skill to Alexa," said Rob Pulciani, Director, Amazon Alexa. "With the WebMD skill, customers can get answers to health questions simply by asking Alexa. It highlights the convenience of a more natural spoken language experience."
This new WebMD service will keep Alexa users informed about their health, giving them a trusted, easy-to-use source for medical information in the comfort of their homes.
WebMD Health Corp. (NASDAQ: WBMD) is the leading provider of health information services, serving consumers, physicians, healthcare professionals, employers, and health plans through our public and private online portals, mobile platforms and health-focused publications. The WebMD Health Network includes WebMD Health, Medscape, MedicineNet, eMedicineHealth, RxList, Medscape Education and other owned WebMD sites.
WebMD®, Medscape®, CME Circle®, Medpulse®, eMedicine®, MedicineNet®, theheart.org® and RxList® are among the trademarks of WebMD Health Corp. or its subsidiaries.
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SOURCE WebMD Health Corp.