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Staff at Amazon's One Medical miss urgent issues like blood pressure spikes and clots, according to new report

Katherine Tangalakis-Lippert   

Staff at Amazon's One Medical miss urgent issues like blood pressure spikes and clots, according to new report
  • The Washington Post reported some patients of Amazon's One Medical struggle to get adequate care.
  • The Post reported call center employees have missed major patient concerns like blood clots.

Some elderly patients of Amazon's subscription-based primary care service, One Medical, are struggling to get adequate care, according to a new report from The Washington Post.

The Post reported that the call center is staffed by contractors who receive about two weeks of classroom-style medical training before responding to patient concerns. They have missed urgent issues like blood pressure spikes and sudden stomach pain with blood in one patient's stool.

Instead of referring patients to urgent or emergency care after receiving reports of chest tightness or a "blood clot, pain, and swelling," the call center staff instead scheduled future appointments — a potentially life-threatening oversight, the outlet reported.

According to records reviewed by The Post, medical staff at the company flagged more than a dozen such incidents internally as requiring more immediate escalation. A former employee told the outlet that "a lot of things" were "slipping through the cracks."

It is unclear whether any patients have been harmed due to how calls were handled by the call center contractors.

A representative for Amazon told BI in a statement that the company developed a centralized team to respond to One Medical's senior patients in January, which has resulted in a 40% increase in answered phone calls and "a more than 20% increase in access to appointments."

"Patient care decisions are made by One Medical clinical and operational leadership, with quality of care and positive health outcomes being their number one priority," Amazon's spokesperson said. "We will continue to further invest in providing high-quality care across all ages through One Medical and One Medical Seniors."

Since Amazon acquired One Medical for $3.9 billion in 2022, Business Insider has reported about concerns over patient privacy, care, and insurance have plagued the company.

Business Insider reported that this year, amid major cost cuts at the company, One Medical has made significant job cuts and closed several corporate offices.

The tech titan's bet on healthcare, one of Amazon's biggest acquisitions ever, has floundered since the deal closed. In the years since, One Medical has reported hundreds of millions of dollars in losses, mass layoffs, and corporate restructuring.


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