On the heels of the COVID-19 Pandemic taking hold of our everyday lives and overwhelming the already-delicate healthcare system in the United States, Google released a set of features last year that aimed to assist people with making more informed choices about their health. These new features ranged from clearly noting in Google search what insurance policy is accepted or which languages are spoken at a specific healthcare provider’s office to helping people get real-time information on COVID-19 vaccine availability nearby.
Google is now expanding on these features by showing the appointment availability for healthcare providers to easily book an appointment with a doctor in your area, as well as same-day visits to a MinuteClinic at CVS. Hema Budaraju, Senior Director of Product, Health & Search Social Impact at Google, explained during the annual “The Check Up” event:
While we’re still in the early stages of rolling this feature out, we’re working with partners, including MinuteClinic at CVS and other scheduling solution providers. We hope to expand features, functionality and our network of partners so we can make it easier for people to get the care they need.
There were other very exciting developments announced at this event, including the work that Fitbit is doing to support heart health and assist with the early detection of heart conditions such as atrial fibrillation (AFib). Google is also partnering with Northwestern Medicine to apply AI to improve maternal health and bring these resources to low-to-middle-income countries.
The goal here seems to be to expand on preventative care and prevent any unnecessary friction when trying to get the care you need. It’s nice to hear that Google uses its extensive resources to focus on health and mental care. To watch the full “The Check Up” event and keep up with everything happening in Google Health, check out this video on the official Google Youtube channel.