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The End of Amazon Care
August 28, 2022
Read Time - 5 minutes
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Amazon made news this week with its abrupt closure of Amazon Care by the end of the year; signaling to many that their target customers -- self-insured employers -- are skeptical about Amazon’s current efforts. Many employers may also be wary about helping Amazon find any success in one of the few consumer industries where they haven’t successfully planted their flag.

Say what you will about Amazon, but most can agree: they certainly have brought a rigorous consumer focus to a wide range of industries and products: from retail to voice technology, streaming content, and more, it seems like Amazon has figured out how to “fix” it all - and generally with the same playbook: offer low prices directly to consumers, along with best-in-class customer service, and a willingness to go above and beyond.

Except for healthcare.

Amazon Care is not Amazon’s first failed attempt at revolutionizing the healthcare industry. Much like their attempt at Haven before it, Amazon seems to throw their successful playbook out the window when it comes to health care: instead of their usual rigorous focus on getting the middle man out of the way and building a product that individual consumers will love, Amazon’s efforts have been focused on employers as the customer. And for Amazon, that makes sense: at their size, for any new effort to matter, they need to attack and “win” at the biggest part of the market -- employer-sponsored insurance.

But, as Amazon has learned, you won’t get disruptive innovation by targeting the enterprise customer. You need to go straight for the individuals most in need -- the working men and women of America who aren’t well served by current options. You need to do the slow and steady, necessary work, to build a product that individual patients will love.

Which begs the question – if Amazon can’t fix America’s broken healthcare system, can anyone?

Yes, actually. Someone can – and someone already is. It’s us, here at Sesame.

We have been quietly building a new healthcare system that really does help the little guy -- a disruptive platform that connects individuals directly to local clinicians for in-person care and virtual care across 80+ specialties, labs, imaging, and more.

At Sesame, you’re in the driver’s seat of your medical care - and what you’re paying for it. You simply browse to find a doctor that best fits your needs, make an appointment (often within two hours) and “buy” it – just like you would buy something on say, Amazon, for example.

Our prices are clear, upfront, and don’t change after the fact. In July, the average virtual appointment with a primary care provider on Sesame was $44. That’s it – not $44 and then you get a surprise bill for $200 more a few months later. Just $44, no strings attached.

We cover the broadest range of your care needs on Sesame as well - not just primary care. You can book appointments with hundreds of specialty providers including cardiology, mental health, OB-GYN, pediatrics, gastroenterology, neurology, and more. Beyond that, patients can seamlessly book their own labs and imaging – with more services being added seemingly every day.

So, we say – Amazon, we love you for your innovations in commerce. Your rigorous focus on the consumer is commendable. But, you’re too big to do the same in health care. Someone new has to do that. And we’re the ones doing it.

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Doctors and specialists on Sesame treat 120+ conditions.

Medical disclaimer

Sesame articles are reviewed by MDs, PhDs, NPs, and qualified health care professionals. To read Sesame’s full medical disclaimer, click here. Sesame’s blog, or any linked materials, are not intended to serve as medical advice, nor is the information a replacement for expert medical advice rendered by a qualified doctor or health care professional.