A new Google search engine tool will allow people to search, find and schedule healthcare appointments with providers in their area.
The search engine company has partnered with providers such as CVS Pharmacy and MinuteClinic to provide users with a list of services offered by healthcare practices as well as days and times to book appointments.
The new feature should benefit patients who don’t have a regular provider or are looking to book a same-day exam or visit, reports The Hill.
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“While we are still in the early stages of rolling out this functionality, we are working with partners including MinuteClinic at CVS and other scheduling solution providers. We hope to expand features, capabilities and our partner network to to be able to make it easier for people to get the care they need,” Google said in a blog post.
A person simply searches for a nearby provider and Google shows them the types of appointments they can schedule. For example, a search for MinuteClinic will offer patients the ability to schedule an exam, vaccination, skin condition, or disease assessment without leaving Google search.
MinuteClinic is a division of CVS Health, which is partnering with Google in its efforts to try to trademark its logo, create an online store and offer patients downloadable products such as prescription drugs, health products , wellness, beauty and personal care. He recently filed a trademark to sell virtual goods and provide healthcare services through the metaverse, according to CNBC News.
“We regularly look for new and innovative ways to engage consumers through a digital-first and forward-thinking approach,” a spokesperson for the drugstore chain told CNBC at the time. “We will continue to explore these and other options to improve the customer experience and launch new consumer-centric services.”
Google also owns YouTube, which since March 24 has been adding health source information panels to videos viewed in Japan, Brazil and India. The panels are designed to identify authoritative sources to provide users with reliable information about their health. It also provides health content shelves to identify viewers of videos from these sources when searching for specific health topics on Google. “These contextual cues help people easily navigate and assess credible health information,” the company said in its blog post.