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Microsoft and Walgreens sign an R&D agreement to develop digital healthcare services

Jan 15, 2019, 5:15 pm

Microsoft Corp has joined forces with drugstore giant Walgreens Boots Alliance Inc. to deliver healthcare services via digital devices. The two conglomerates have signed a seven-year agreement during which they intend to research and develop better ways to provide cost-effective healthcare services to the consumers’ doorstep.

The agreement is intended to allow Microsoft to help connect those in need with Walgreens virtually to provide them with an array of therapeutic services, from preventive self-care to management of chronic diseases. The partnership also intends to come up with healthcare solutions to allow for the tripartite function of reducing emergency room visits, lowering the cost of healthcare, and decreasing hospital readmissions.

While Walgreens, for its part, has decided to come up with 12 pilot stores selling select healthcare devices by 2019; Microsoft shall take the responsibility of providing cloud services to Walgreens, besides providing over 380,000 Walgreens employees and stores worldwide with the benefit of Microsoft 365.

This partnership follows closely at the heels of a similar one signed among Amazon.com Inc, Berkshire Hathaway Inc, and JPMorgan Chase & Co in the earlier parts of 2018 to form a company that could end up directly negotiating with drug-makers and healthcare providers to access their vast databases, besides making the process cost-effective by doing away with the middle-men.

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