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POWER PLAYERS: The 16 leaders at Google Health shaping the tech giant's secretive healthcare business
Summary List Placement Google is going after the healthcare industry with renewed intensity. Starting when Dr....Summary List Placement Google is going after the healthcare industry with renewed intensity. Starting when Dr. David Feinberg joined the company in 2019, the tech giant is consolidating many of its health efforts onto a single team. Called "Google Health," it's got more than 500 managers, scientists, clinicians, engineers, and product experts right now – and plans to only get bigger. Read more: Google's secretive healthcare business wants to organize the world's health information, but insiders describe how turf wars and trust issues are hamstringing the operation A past iteration of the team, which tried to offer online personal health records, never took off. The company shut it down nearly 10 years ago, citing a lack of widespread adoption. But the new group is an ambitious, self-described "product area" within Google that's hoping to transform the way everyday people get care, and how the system delivers it. Inside Google, Google Health oversees artificial intelligence projects and work with Verily, YouTube, and search teams. It's also known to be a kind of medical voice and advisor to higher ups like CEO Sundar Pichai. Read more: As Verily looks to IPO, CEO Andrew Conrad says an inter-Alphabet 'sibling rivalry' with Google's own health team is hurting both companies. Externally, the team has ongoing projects with public health officials, academic medical centers, and health systems like Ascension. Business Insider identified 16 of the top leaders steering this still-developing part of Google's strategy into the future. From members of former President Barack Obama's administration to scientists on the cutting edge of machine learning, it's a star-studded lineup given the difficult task of executing Google's overall health mission: "improving the lives of as many people as possible." Here's a rare look at the power players at Google Health, according to Google and other sources, listed alphabetically: This article was initially published in August and has been updated to reflect the departures of Dr. Dominic King and Michael Macdonnell from the Google Health team. Afia Asamoah – Head of Legal Afia Asamoah has a long history with health initiatives within Alphabet: She was the first lawyer to support Google's health project back in 2014 when it was called Google Life Sciences. Her early work included the licensing of Google patents for a partnership with Alcon on a smart contact lens. When Life Sciences became Verily in 2015, Asamoah remained as the group's senior counsel, and becoming Verily's first trust and compliance officer. In 2019, she moved back over to the mothership and joined Google Health as their new head of legal. Dr. Robert Califf – Advisor, Clinical Policy and Strategy As the former head of the US Food and Drug Administration under Obama, Dr. Robert Califf is one of Google Health's highest-profile hire for regulatory work. Starting in the fall of 2019, he's been leading clinical policy and strategy for Verily while also advising Google Health. In fact, his work with Verily, which centered on provider-friendly tech, began before he joined Alphabet full-time. "My hope is that Silicon Valley and entrepreneurs nationwide will collaborate on building an environment capable of linking the more than 300 million people in the U.S. to information that helps them live healthy, productive lives," Califf wrote in 2017. A cardiologist and researcher, he's still an adjunct professor at Duke University, where he helped create the Duke Clinical Research Institute, the largest academic clinical research organization, and Duke Forge, a center for health science data, according to Duke. Greg Corrado – Distinguished Scientist A Google "Distinguished Scientist," Greg Corrado is one Google's brainiest brains. Armed with a PhD in neuroscience and master's degree in computer science from Stanford University, he heads Google Health's research and innovations division. Lately, Corrado is focusing on machine learning in healthcare, overseeing research in genomics, clinical predictions, medical image interpretation, and novel signals research, according to Google. Prior to that, he cofounded the Google Brain team, which is laser focused on artificial intelligence. And before Google, he modeled human neural networks for a variety of applications at IBM. Jeff Dean — Senior Fellow, SVP of Google AI Jeff Dean has been at Google since 1999 and is something of a legend in the ranks. He was one of the earliest members of the Google Brain team, an autonomous research group, and now leads Google's entire AI division. Health has always been close to Dean's heart. In the 90s, he worked on statistical modeling for the World Health Organization before joining the tech giant – and he now oversees Google Health group as part of his duties. Dean has worked on research in using deep learning for electronic health records, and overseen the rollout of projects including a joint venture with Verily to use AI to screen for diabetic eye disease. Feinberg reports to Jeff Dean, who is one of Google CEO Sundar Pichai's small handful of direct reports. Dr. Karen DeSalvo – Chief Health Officer Dr. Karen DeSalvo is Google Health's Chief Health Officer and the broader company's "go-to medical expert," according to Google. She's meant to bring a holistic view of health to Google's products and services, as she said in a recent Google interview. Lately, DeSalvo, as one of Google's most prominent voices in public health more broadly, is leading a lot of the tech giant's response to coronavirus outbreaks. One such project includes getting Google's search results to prioritize credible information about the pandemic. DeSalvo is on the advisory board for Google's sister company Verily Life Sciences, as well as the board of directors at Welltower, a real estate investment trust, according to her resume. She also served on Humana's board until 2019. Prior to joining Google, DeSalvo helped re-engineer healthcare in Louisiana after Hurricane Katrina. At the US Department of Health and Human Services, she facilitated upgrades to the US health system's sluggish IT. A physician and professor, much of her work and research has focused on barriers to care. Read more: One of Google's top doctors explains how its coronavirus response is feeding into its long-term plans to reinvent how people get health information Dr. David Feinberg — VP and Head When Dr. David Feinberg became the head of Google Health in January 2019, he took charge of a newly-formed organization made up of the Google Research health team, DeepMind Health, and one of Google's hardware teams. It was a major new effort to align Google's thinking about health under one roof, and a big signal that Google was taking health seriously. The health organization spans a range of consumer product and research projects, and insiders say Feinberg has spent a lot of his early term trying to determine what Google's role in healthcare should be. Not to mention how the company's various initiatives, including the life sciences arm Verily, should work together. Feinberg started as a child psychiatrist at UCLA, helping patients with mental health needs. He later went on to become CEO of Geisinger Health, overseeing a community of more than 3 million patients. Although David Feinberg leads Google Health, he reports to Jeff Dean – Google's head of all things artificial intelligence – a signal of how important AI is to the company's healthcare efforts. Read more: We just got our first look at what Google's grand plans are for healthcare after it brought in a top doctor to lead its health team Kristen Gill — COO, VP of BizOps, Business Finance Officer Kristen Gil has been directing business operations inside Google since 2007, working with leaders across the company on strategies to grow and monetize. Gil now oversees Google Health as part of her role – with one of the busiest job titles in the organization. She's helped Google to continually re-architect its structure as the company has grown, and can occasionally be seen at conferences offering a glimpse into the inner-workings of the tech behemoth. "I think [process] can both be a real way to unlock innovation and it can also be a real way to suck the life blood out of innovation," Gil told an audience at a re:Work event in 2016. Dr. Michael Howell – Chief Clinical Strategist As Google's chief clinical strategist, Dr. Michael Howell is focused on various applications of the company's technology within the healthcare system at large. Much of his work at Google and elsewhere is about improving and studying the actual delivery of care — like using data from electronic health records to figure out how people get infections in hospitals, according to the company. Before Google, he was chief quality officer at the University of Chicago Medicine. Alan Karthikesalingam – Research Lead, UK Dr. Alan Karthikesalingam is the head of Google Health's machine learning research group in London. A surgeon, he's a key figure in Google's work to aid medical diagnoses. Prior to joining Google Health, he led DeepMind and Google's teams through landmark studies about breast cancer screening, blinding eye diseases, and patient deterioration with the US' Veterans Affairs, all of which tested various applications of AI, according to the company. Now, Karthikesalingam's work is largely focused on Google's development of products for clinical care, AI safety, and algorithmic bias, according to Google. With a PhD in vascular surgery, master's in advanced surgical practice, and a medical degree, Karthikesalingam is still a practicing surgeon and lecturer at the Imperial College in London. Matt Klainer – VP, Business Development Matt Klainer leads up business development on Google Health, putting him in charge of all efforts to commercialize the business and form key partnerships. Klainer joined the Google Health team in January and replaced Virginia McFerran, previously of UnitedHealth Group, who was at Google Health for just seven months. Klainer reports to Donald Harrison, Google's president of global partnerships and corporate development, who's a direct report of Chief Business Officer Philipp Schindler. Klainer's tenure at Google spans back to 2008 and has seen him working on areas such as Android and consumer communications products. Paul Muret – VP, Product and Engineering A company veteran, Paul Muret joined Google in 2005 when it acquired his web analytics startup, Urchin. He then led the Google Analytics for several years, later adding Display, Video and Apps to his title responsibilities. In 2018, Muret moved over to a new VP role in AI and health, and CNBC reported that he advocated for the idea of forming the Google Health organization before Google named Feinberg CEO. Now, he leads Google Health's entire product division. Mike Pearson – Chief of Staff As Google Health's chief of staff, Mike Pearson is responsible for the execution of the health team's various projects. Pearson, who has previously worked on business development across Android and Google Life Sciences (before it was renamed Verily), reports directly to Feinberg at Google Health. Prior to joining Google's health wing, he helped erect CapitalG, Alphabet's private equity investment vehicle, led development of Android stores, and worked on strategy for apps. Dr. Lily Peng – Product Manager, Research Dr. Lily Peng leads the product management team for the medical imaging and diagnostics team at Google Health, which is one of the busiest in the organization. Her team works with deep learning, with the goal of making healthcare more accurate, according to Google. Their recent projects tap AI to detect diseases, predict cardiovascular health factors, classify skin diseases, and more. In fact, Peng's team recently made an algorithm that identifies diabetic retinopathy. It's already being used by doctors in India, Thailand, and Europe, according to Google. Before Google, Peng worked at Doximity, an online networking platform for medical professionals, and cofounded Nano Precision Medical, a medical device startup. Read more: Meet the 37-year-old leading Google Health's biggest bet so far. Her work hints at what could be ahead for the secretive healthcare business. Linda Peters – VP, Quality and Regulatory Linda Peters started working at Google in the fall of 2019. She's tasked with making sure that Google's portfolio of health products — which includes cancer screening, image processing tools, and far more — lands regulatory approvals and otherwise complies with the law. Prior to Google, Peters worked for medical device giant Becton Dickinson, where she reported directly to the CEO and oversaw areas including FDA approval of drugs and software. Dr. Alvin Rajkomar – Research Scientist A researcher for Google Brain and product manager, Dr. Alvin Rajkomar is focused on a huge subset of Google Health's work: provider-facing tech tools. He spends a lot of time combing through big clinical databases with deep learning. The goal is to find ways of improving care based on information from the masses. Rajkomar is also a key leader in Google's oft-reported work with Ascension, which aims to create search tools for clinicians that call up patients' information from health records, among other things. His team of researchers, meanwhile, is similarly focused on tech that unifies patient information, from lab results to diagnoses, into one place for clinicians, according to Google. Outside of Google, Rajkomar is also a practicing physician at the University of California, San Francisco, and holds an adjunct faculty position. Read more: Google is working with a massive health system to gather data on millions of patients. Here's an inside look at the tools they're developing. Shashidhar Thakur – VP, Engineering Shashidhar Thakur – known as "Shashi" to friends and colleagues – made his mark at Google working on search products including Google Discover and the knowledge graph. Thakur, who for many years worked closely with Google search guru Ben Gomes (now overseeing Google's education initiative), jumped over to the Google Health team in 2019 where he's currently VP of engineering. Insiders say Thakur's work in search and AI makes him perfectly placed for Google Health's ambitious to bridge the divide between health and tech.
Meet the 37-year-old leading Google Health's biggest bet so far. Her work hints at what could be ahead for the secretive healthcare business.
Summary List Placement Dr. Lily Peng is clear-eyed about what Google is up against when it...Summary List Placement Dr. Lily Peng is clear-eyed about what Google is up against when it comes to doing business in the $3.6 trillion healthcare industry. "Healthcare is not Google's jam," Peng told Business Insider. "Healthcare is incredibly — well, complicated is an understatement. And there's all these different parts of healthcare," she said. The size and complexity of healthcare make it difficult to crack into, especially when it comes to working together with medical professionals. "And I think that's a new environment for us," Peng added. Peng, a 37-year-old physician-scientist, is a product manager for Google Health who's tasked with bringing artificial intelligence tools to life through partnerships with health systems and doctors. Google Health, a roughly 600-person group within Google, formed in 2018 to focus on organizing the world's health information and consolidating the company's many health-related projects. Read more: Meet the 30 young leaders who are forging a new future for the $3.6 trillion healthcare industry It's one of many efforts among Big Tech companies to crack the code of US healthcare. From cloud computing to wearables — Amazon, Google, Microsoft, and Apple all have teams focused on how their technology can be relevant to drug discovery, clinical care, or doctor-to-doctor communications. Google's health wing is still finding its footing, as turf wars and trust issues have gotten in the way of its early work. Peng's team of coders and developers is working on a tool that screens for diabetic retinopathy, a complication that can lead to blindness. The work is still early, but it's our best look yet at how Google Health could make money and bring tools to market in the future. For her work, Peng was named to Business Insider's list of 30 leaders under 40 transforming healthcare. Peng joined Google in 2013 after being drawn by its 'DNA of creativity' Throughout high school and college, Peng gravitated towards the idea that you can learn useful things about the world by doing this thing called "research," she said. Then at Stanford University, one of her best friends got Hodgkin's lymphoma, and a clinical trial saved his life, Peng said. It helped her decide to pursue an MD-PhD program, and a career path that combined tech, research, and medicine. Drawn by its size and "DNA of creativity," Peng said she joined Google in 2013 after stints in venture capital and Doximity, an online networking site for doctors, similar to LinkedIn. Read more: One of Google's top doctors explains how its coronavirus response is feeding into its long-term plans to reinvent how people get health information Peng is using Google's AI to solve some of healthcare's stickiest problems, starting in India Google Health's most advanced AI product, built by Peng's team, is an algorithm that can help diagnose diabetic retinopathy from eye scans. The blindness it causes is preventable if caught early, but in some regions there aren't enough doctors to perform them, or people don't take it upon themselves to track down specialists for something that's purely theoretical, Peng said. In India, for example, there's only one eye doctor for every 4,133 patients with diabetes, she said in a TED Talk. Built with hospitals and businesses in India, which Peng didn't mention by name, the algorithm is basically a diagnostic test. When fed an image from the eye scan, it gives a diagnosis to a healthcare worker. People who're deemed sick by the tool get a referral to a doctor for further treatment. That means one specialist can see a lot more patients who're likely to really have a problem, and therefore more likely to show up to appointments. And people who aren't sick are routed out of the otherwise crowded pipeline. Read more: Google's secretive healthcare business wants to organize the world's health information, but insiders describe how turf wars and trust issues are hamstringing the operation The tool is currently approved in Europe and deployed in a few clinics in India. It's a good example of what AI is good at in healthcare right now, Peng said. It's completing a fairly narrow, straightforward task that physicians have done 10,000 times. Making accurate algorithms for more confusing tasks, like assessing the severity of complex diseases, is farther away, she said. Getting these tools to work in real clinics, hospitals, and doctors' offices is another issue altogether. "I don't think we're quite there yet to handle some of these broader questions. That's where there's a lot of hype of like, 'It's going to replace your doctor!' Peng said. "Well, not really. It's going to give your doctor the tools to make good decisions." A mission to make healthcare 'Googlier' Google CEO Sundar Pichai has tasked the Google Health team with thinking through how it can improve the world's health. Peng breaks the mission up into two categories: making Google healthier, and making healthcare "Googlier." The former, in other words making Google products better for people with health concerns, comes easier, she said. The team's recent work to prop up credible information about the pandemic and mental health on the search page, as one example, is kind of Google's bread and butter: distilling huge amounts of customer-driven data and directing users to certain web pages. The latter category, which involves working hand-in-hand with real doctors in the healthcare system, comes harder to the tech giant. "How do we give doctors these super powers to help screen patients, diagnose patients, route patients appropriately, etc.?" Peng said. "It's not just like we can launch one thing and then it scales really well. A lot of times healthcare is just not necessarily scalable," she said. "That's new for Google."Join the conversation about this story » NOW WATCH: We tested a machine that brews beer at the push of a button
One of Google's top doctors explains how its coronavirus response is feeding into its long-term plans to reinvent how people get health information
We spoke with Karen DeSalvo, Google's chief health officer, who's in charge of a clinical team...We spoke with Karen DeSalvo, Google's chief health officer, who's in charge of a clinical team at Google making products for clinicians and consumers. She said many of Google Health's coronavirus projects, like tracking and answering people's health-related questions, are part of broader strategy around users' "discover to action pathway." Google wants to aid people's health-related searches, in other words, whether it's answering a simple question about symptoms or booking a telehealth appointment. Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories. It's been 20 months since Google's health efforts got revamped, and nearly a quarter of that time has been spent amid a pandemic. The team started when Dr. David Feinberg, the former CEO of Geisinger Health, joined Google in January 2019. From there, Feinberg as the head of Google Health brought together scientists, engineers, and managers from across Google in an effort to get many of the trillion-dollar company's healthcare projects under the same roof. When the coronavirus pandemic started rolling across the US in March, the young team had to speed up projects that were only ideas — all while steering real people towards testing sites, hospitals, online appointments, and whatever else they came to Google for. In the months since, Google Health's projects are taking on a theme that's baked into the team's broader healthcare strategy, Dr. Karen DeSalvo, Google's chief health officer, told Business Insider. Whether it's through YouTube, Maps, Google Assistant, or simply Google.com, the tech giant wants to guide consumers on their healthcare experience wherever and whenever they come into contact with the company. For those that ask Google for local testing sites, in other words, the goal is to actually get them to one. For those looking for doctors, the goal is to set up an appointment. Internally, the team calls it the "discover to action pathway," DeSalvo said. Read more: We found the 18 leaders at Google who are deciding the future of the tech giant's healthcare business "We want to make sure we're thinking about the kinds of questions people are coming to us with, and how we can help them navigate that experience," she said. It's a key part of Alphabet's overall goal as well. During Alphabet's earnings in July, CEO Sundar Pichai told investors there's been an enormous effort across search and product teams to provide locally relevant information about coronavirus in more than 70 languages in 200 countries. "I'm looking at different types of user journeys and making sure each of them is getting deeper and better," Pichai said on the call. "So for example in Google, as people have started coming for more health-related information, how is that experience working?" Read more: 11 tech chiefs, analysts, and bankers in healthcare reveal how Amazon, Microsoft, and Google have used the coronavirus to make new inroads in the $3.6 trillion industry Google is flagging relevant health information based on your search terms DeSalvo said Google is well aware of its responsibility to uplift information that's credible, especially amid a pandemic. Her job is to lead a clinical team at Google Health tasked with making products for clinicians and consumers, she said. As one of Google's top doctors, DeSalvo also advises the rest of the company about health and coronavirus on a case by case basis. Prior to Google, she was New Orleans' health commissioner after Hurricane Katrina and helped the US Department of Health and Human Services respond to Zika and Ebola outbreaks. "My experiences in public health, and in science and in medicine, are that it's really hard to get the right information to people," she said. In response to people asking questions about COVID-19, the disease caused by the novel coronavirus, Google Health designed a self-assessment for coronavirus with health agencies around the world. It's triggered by certain search terms, and the results give people an idea of whether they should see a doctor or get tested. It rolled out a similar screener for mental health in May, as Americans struggled to grapple with their new realities. Thoughts of suicide nearly doubled compared to the year before, and anxiety and depression increased more than fourfold in the last year. Prompted by soaring demand for telehealth, Google's health unit also sped up development for a "virtual care feature" that launched in April. If medical professionals are able to do phone or video visits, Google can now say so in a little blurb reading "Get online care" in their normal search results on Google.com and maps. It links to sites like Mount Sinai's telehealth services in New York, which has options for doctors' appointments. A second aspect of the feature displays names of telehealth companies with links and price information when people search for things like "immediate care" in Search and Maps. That's not available everywhere in the US yet. Other search upgrades show people active testing sites, credible health information on YouTube, and how to find guidance from their local health department, DeSalvo said. "We're trying to get the world's health information available for consumers where it matters," including for depression, anxiety, diabetes, and coronavirus, she said. Google's work helping people navigate their healthcare is still in its early days DeSalvo cautioned that Google Health's consumer-facing work is still early. For now, the group's machine learning is much farther along, with some devices already being used to make medical diagnoses faster and more accurate. Another huge coronavirus project has been Google's contract-tracing program with Apple, which isn't related to user searches. Four US states and 16 countries or regions are using it to tell people if they've likely been exposed to coronavirus, according to the company. Ultimately, however, some industry leaders think Google could become a kind of Expedia for doctors' visits, per Business Insider's interviews. One of Google Health's oldest projects helps doctors search medical records, and obviously the tech giant's long history started with a humble search engine. Read more: The man who helps hospitals and clinics move to Google's cloud shares how the coronavirus pandemic is shaping its healthcare push The larger company has asked Google Health specifically to think through how it can improve the world's health, which involves direct work with consumers — not just the providers who care for them, DeSalvo said. "If we're going to really make a difference in the lives of people's health, we have to do that by addressing not only tools and support for carers, but we have to do that as much as we can directly to consumers and other parts of the system," DeSalvo said.Join the conversation about this story » NOW WATCH: Why Pikes Peak is the most dangerous racetrack in America
Google and a massive hospital system are reportedly collecting private health data on millions of Americans in secret
Google has teamed up with the hospital system Ascension to collect personal health information on millions...Google has teamed up with the hospital system Ascension to collect personal health information on millions of Americans, The Wall Street Journal reported. Data such as lab results and hospital records were compiled for millions of patients, the Journal reported. The initiative by Google and Ascension is called "Project Nightingale," the newspaper said. Neither patients or doctors have been notified, and at least 150 Google employees have access to the patients' data. Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories. Google has teamed up with the massive Ascension hospital system to collect detailed personal health information from millions of Americans without their knowledge, The Wall Street Journal reported. The data collection initiative is called "Project Nightingale," people familiar with the matter said and internal documents show, the Journal's Rob Copeland reported. The data includes lab results, diagnoses, and hospital records, and provides detailed information on peoples' health histories. According to The Wall Street Journal, neither patients nor doctors were notified, and at least 150 Google employees have access to the data. Google is using the patient data to tune artificial intelligence software that may help improve patient care, according to the report. Tech giants like Amazon, Microsoft, and Google are all working to expand in the $3.5 trillion US healthcare industry with offerings ranging from cloud services and AI to hardware and even patient care. Google told The Wall Street Journal that the project complies with federal laws and that patient privacy is protected. Google and Ascension didn't respond to requests for comment from Business Insider. Ascension is one of the biggest health systems in the US, with about 150 hospitals. The health system generated about $25 billion in operating revenue last year. Want to tell us about your experience with Google in healthcare? Email firstname.lastname@example.orgJoin the conversation about this story » NOW WATCH: What's really going on inside an insect-munching venus flytrap
Tech giants like Google and Amazon are beefing up their healthcare strategies. Here's how 7 tech titans plan to tackle the $3.5 trillion industry.
Big tech giants have their eyes on the $3.5 trillion US healthcare industry. As healthcare costs...Big tech giants have their eyes on the $3.5 trillion US healthcare industry. As healthcare costs keep rising for Americans, tech companies are betting they can have a part in fixing the broken pieces of the industry. Here's how tech companies like Google, Microsoft, and Amazon are building out their healthcare strategies. Visit BI Prime for more stories. The $3.5 trillion healthcare industry is ripe for disruption. Healthcare costs are rising for consumers, and numerous players all wanting control over the dollars flowing in and out. From the perspective of the fast-moving technology industry, change is slow going, leaving entrepreneurs and companies alike thinking, "There has to be an easier way." Tech powerhouses like Google, Amazon and Microsoft are increasingly focused on expanding in US healthcare. They've pursued strategies like selling software and computing services, offering hardware, and even shown some signs that they'll get into the business of providing healthcare. They're not alone in going after the inefficient healthcare system. America's largest retailers like Walmart and CVS Health are also bulking up their healthcare strategies in a bid to win over patients with more convenient care and ideally lower prices. Here's how tech companies like Google, Microsoft, and Amazon are building out their healthcare strategies, drawing from their respective tech industry expertise and often focusing on fixing healthcare starting with their own employees. Read more: Companies like Walmart, CVS, and Amazon are beefing up their healthcare strategies. Here are their plans to upend the $3.5 trillion industry.Amazon Amazon in 2018 sent shockwaves through the healthcare industry when it said it was acquiring online pharmacy PillPack. PillPack mails prescriptions to people who take multiple medications, packaging them together based on dose. The company has pharmacies around the country that send out medications by mail. In addition to PillPack, Amazon is building out services for its employees. In September, Amazon revealed its new health clinic program, Amazon Care. Through the program, which is still in the pilot stage, Amazon employees in the Seattle area can get virtual visits with doctors and in-home care that includes delivery of prescription medicines. The company has also acquired a digital health startup called Health Navigator, which will join Amazon Care, CNBC reported in October. Read more: Amazon just launched a health clinic pilot program. It's the latest sign the company wants to upend US healthcare. Over the past year, PillPack has started to give hints of where it's business is heading with the support of Amazon. CNBC reported in May that a group of health insurers approached PillPack about providing its services to their customers, though no agreement has yet been reached. Read more: We just got the first look at how Amazon's $750 million acquisition of PillPack could upend the US healthcare system Google Over the past year, Google has gotten deeper into healthcare, hiring Dr. David Feinberg to head up the Google Health division. Feinberg's team is now responsible for coordinating health initiatives across Google, ranging from the company's search engine and map products, to its Android smartphone operating system, to more futuristic offerings in areas like artificial intelligence. In his speech at a conference in October, Feinberg said that one of his first main goals for the team will be to oversee how health-related searches come up, and work to improve that with the Google Search team. Read more: We just got our first look at what Google's grand plans are for healthcare after it brought in a top doctor to lead its health team Google Health is just one aspect of parent company Alphabet's healthcare strategy. Within Google, Google Cloud is working to ink cloud contracts with healthcare systems. Mayo Clinic in September signed Google as its cloud and AI partner. There's also Verily, the life sciences arm of Alphabet, as well as Calico, its life-extension spinoff. Verily has its hands in projects spanning robotics to blood-sugar-tracking devices to work on addiction treatment. The company has also made investments in healthcare through its venture funds GV and Capital G as well as through Alphabet itself. On Friday, Google reached a $2.1 billion deal to acquire Fitbit. The brand, best known for its fitness watches, also has a big business selling a health platform that combines coaching and fitness tracking to employers and health plans. Beyond working with existing products, Feinberg's oversight includes the health team at Google AI, hardware components, and DeepMind Health. Both Google AI and DeepMind have pursued projects that analyze medical images like eye scans and scans of breast cancer cells, with the hope of aiding medical professionals in diagnosing and treating patients. Apple Apple has slowly but surely moved its way into healthcare, in particular through its hardware including the Apple Watch. The watch can track heart rate and look for abnormal heart rhythms, and its most recent iteration also included an update for menstrual cycle tracking. Apple's phones are also pre-loaded with a Health app, collecting fitness and health data users opt to share with the device. The health app also has the ability to collect personal health record information and sync up with some hospitals. The app tracks things like vaccination records, lab results, and allergies. The company has been going deep on heart health, hiring cardiologists and in 2018 getting the Food and Drug Administration's approval for its heart-monitoring technology, giving it the ability to alert wearers of irregular heart rates. Researchers are also increasingly using data from the watch and other Apple devices in studies. Apple's also been working with insurers like Aetna and UnitedHealthcare. In the case of Aetna, the program is wagering that an app and an Apple Watch can keep its members healthier. Medicare Advantage upstart Devoted Health is covering the watch as a benefit. Apple also operates clinics for its employees, called AC Wellness Networks, which are run independently from Apple but are exclusively for its employees. Read more: Apple is going after a project Google abandoned — easy access to your complete medical records Microsoft Microsoft has historically had trouble cracking into the healthcare business. Most notably, Microsoft built its health-records tool called HealthVault, but it also ultimately didn't work and was wound down. Now, the company's health strategy lies in its ability to provide cloud services to healthcare companies as well as software. That's taken shape in the form of high-profile partnerships with the likes of companies like Walgreens, Novartis, Humana, and West Coast-based health system Providence St. Joseph Health. In addition to providing cloud services, Microsoft also commits to working with its partners on projects. For instance, with Walgreens, it plans to test out health offerings, including 12 pilot "digital health corners" in stores. Those are in the process of being executed, Peter Lee, the corporate vice president of Microsoft Healthcare told Business Insider at the HLTH conference in Las Vegas. "It feels like we're really well organized right now," Lee said. Read more: Microsoft just forged a key alliance with the Swiss pharma giant Novartis to win a bigger piece of an $11 billion market Facebook Facebook, the social network giant, is looking to intersect with the healthcare market via monitoring tools and leveraging its communities to put out the call for blood donations. Facebook' health plays are led by its head of healthcare research Dr. Freddy Abnousi, a cardiologist. In October, the company unveiled a tool called "Preventive Health" that's aimed at prompting users to get check-ups and providing options where they can go get appointments and see what tests they might need to take, like to check on cholesterol levels. Facebook said the information provided on the tool is only accessible to a select team at Facebook and won't be shared with third parties like health insurers. Even so, Facebook's health ambitions come with a major layer of skepticism based on the company's track record of data sharing with advertisers and other third parties. "No one's going to tell Facebook about their diabetes or STDs," New York University marketing professor Scott Galloway said in December. Read more: Facebook just expanded its blood-donation tool to the entire US Uber Ride-hailing company Uber is betting that it can turn its healthcare ambitions into a key business, using its Uber Health unit as a new way to get into smaller, rural markets across the country. Uber Health works with health plans to provide rides to doctor offices for patients who might otherwise have a hard time going in. In 2018, the company hired Dan Trigub from its competitor Lyft to head the team. Uber Health works with health plans to manage the transportation needs of their members, particularly elderly Americans in Medicare plans — the federal health-insurance program for seniors — and those on Medicaid plans serving low-income Americans. Drivers are assigned rides that are treated the same as commercial trips. The health-transportation market is massive — LogistiCare, a transportation broker that Uber is working with, facilitates more than 60 million trips a year — and Uber is one of a number of players in the space that includes Lyft as well. Because of the arrangements with health plans that want to coordinate travel for their members, Uber is able to move into more rural markets. "When we think about our aging population, they tend to live away from big cities and in those rural markets," Trigub told Business Insider in an October interview on the sidelines of the CB Insights Future of Health conference in New York. Read more: We talked to a top Uber exec about how the ride-hailing giant is betting on healthcare to reach a new set of customers Lyft Like Uber, Lyft is drawing from its expertise in transportation as it builds its health business. "You're seeing every tech company get into care. It's a sixth of our GDP. So it's kind of hard to ignore it as, as a market," Megan Callahan, vice president of healthcare at Lyft, told Business Insider. Callahan joined Lyft in November 2018 after serving as the chief strategy officer at Change Healthcare, a spin-out of McKesson. Starting in 2016, Lyft has been working with health plans, health systems, and transportation brokers to manage their members transportation needs. The company now works with Medicaid plans in six states, tapping into what Callahan characterized as a little over half of the $6 billion non-emergency medical transportation market. Callahan told Business Insider that the team is a "fast-growing part of Lyft Business," the enterprise businesses associated with the ride-sharing company. Callahan said that the company has a higher volume of rides than Uber's health division. Neither Lyft nor Uber breaks out its ride volume related to health.