The UK’s NHA (National Health Service) recently declared a partnership with Amazon to make it simpler for people to access health advice utilizing Alexa voice technology. The notion is to aid people with disabilities, counting mobility or vision damages, so that they can search for health information through the NHS’ site and answer questions such as “Alexa, what are the signs and symptoms of the flu?” Matt Hancock—the UK’s Health Secretary—tweeted on Twitter that the corporation will “empower people to take better control of their health.” But everyone is not convinced that the partnership with Amazon Alexa is a helpful step for UK citizens or the NHS.
Across Europe, privacy is a main priority for consumers and regulators. And Amazon’s past performance on privacy has been blemished, for example, Amazon employees allegedly listened to fragments of recordings from the company’s voice assistant. On the contrary, in response Amazon noted that employees do not have direct entry to the information, and they cannot recognize specific individuals. In interviews, Hancock stressed that individual privacy would be safeguarded through encryption and other tools. Some Brits have reported about whether the NHS management should be forging contracts with technology firms, rather than resolving some of the main structural issues in the health system.
On a related note, recently, experts raised privacy apprehensions over the NHS and Alexa tie-up. Authorized and security experts have elevated concerns about a new NHS contract with Amazon that would allow patients to access health data via voice-assistant technology. Announced in recent time, the tie-up is intended to help those who otherwise will find accessing the NHS site difficult, such as the blind or elderly people. While doing so, it can aid to lessen the workload for pharmacists and general practitioners.