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Amazon plans job cuts in health-care business after shuttering telehealth service – CNBC

The Amazon Spheres in Seattle Washington on Sept. 20th, 2018.  
Todd Haselton | CNBC

Amazon . com is preparing to cut more than 150 jobs as it winds down its telehealth offering known as Amazon Care, according to filings submitted in Washington state.

Amazon . com said 159 employees will be laid off from Amazon Care, based on Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification (WARN) filings submitted late Thursday. The particular WARN Act requires employers to provide advance notice, generally within 60 days, of mass layoffs or plant closings.

Another 236 employees will be let go from Care Medical, a team of clinicians that was charged with treating Amazon . com Care patients, based on a separate WARN notice also filed Thursday. Care Medical is an independent company that was contracted to work with Amazon.

The layoffs are slated to begin Dec. 1, according to the filings.

Amazon . com said past due last month that it will wind straight down its telehealth service after Dec. 31. The company chose to shutter the support after determining it wasn’t “a complete enough offering” for customers, Amazon said.

Amazon Care was one piece of Amazon’s strategy to upend the health-care industry, alongside its pharmacy and consumer diagnostics ventures. Even after shuttering Amazon Care, the company has continued its expansion into health care. In July, Amazon said this would acquire One Medical for $3. 9 billion, bringing in a network of boutique primary care clinics.

Amazon . com Care launched in 2019 as the pilot program for employees in and around the particular company’s Seattle headquarters, before expanding to serve other employers. The service provides virtual urgent care visits, as well as free telehealth consults and in-home visits for a fee through nurses with regard to testing plus vaccinations.

At the time that Amazon announced it would shutter the service, the organization said in a memo in order to employees it would give them the particular opportunity to find roles elsewhere at Amazon.

“Many Care workers will have a good opportunity in order to join some other parts of the Health Services organization or other teams at Amazon . com — which we’ll be discussing with many of you shortly — and we’ll also support employees looking for roles outside of the company, ” Amazon Health Services lead Neil Lindsay wrote in the memo.

An Amazon representative reiterated in an emailed statement that those affected will certainly have the opportunity to find additional jobs internally. “Our priority continues to be supporting our employees during this transition, inch the declaration said.

Within the second quarter , Amazon shaved its headcount by 99, 000 people to 1. 52 million workers. The retail giant is taking steps to shrink the workforce as it looks in order to cut costs right after growing its staff and warehouse footprint at an unprecedent pace during the Covid-19 pandemic.

WATCH: Amazon pulls the plug on Amazon Care

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