AMAZON Buys “One Medical”

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By Neal Freyman [Morning Brew]

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Amazon turned and coughed up $3.9 billion to buy One Medical, a primary care provider, in its biggest push yet into health care. It may not be long until your Prime membership comes with a complimentary physical.

What’s One Medical? A company that operates more than 180 medical offices across 25 US markets, offering both in-person and virtual medical services. When it went public as a unicorn in January 2020, it followed a similar trajectory of other high-flying startups: A huge spike when telehealth was in feverish demand, then an equally huge crash to fall well below its IPO price.

The deal for One Medical represents Andy Jassy’s first major acquisition as CEO of Amazon, showing that he’s willing to make bets on growth in certain areas even as he reins in costs in others.

So why is health care a priority?

As you know all too well from every time you pay a medical bill, health care is a massive industry. With a market size of $4 trillion, it accounts for about 20% of the entire US economy. And as Amazon looks to grow outside of its core areas, it sees potential in sending a digital shock wave through a medical industry that’s entangled in a complex web of insurance companies and government regulations.

Not that it’s even clear what a “core” area of Amazon is anymore. Besides its e-commerce marketplace, Amazon has tentacles in cloud services, grocery stores, entertainment, and many other sectors. Basically, we’re about to live in a world where one company owns the James Bond franchise…and also medical clinics.

But Amazon’s infatuation with health care isn’t new. It acquired the online pharmacy PillPack in 2018, and launched its own on-demand health care services one year later. Some projects, like its buzzy joint venture with Berkshire Hathaway and JPMorgan, collapsed, illustrating the challenges for anyone—even Bezos and Buffett—to break into the medical realm.

Those stumbles won’t stop Amazon, or Big Tech in general, from trying. Just this week, Apple released a 60-page report outlining why health care will be a major focus for the company going forward.—NF

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BUSINESS MEDICINE: https://www.amazon.com/Business-Medical-Practice-Transformational-Doctors/dp/0826105750/ref=sr_1_9?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1287563112&sr=1-9

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UPDATE: Crypto Advertisements on Super Bowl Sunday 2022

The Crypto Bowl and the Dot Com Bowl?

By Staff Reporters

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CRYPTO CURRENCY: Tonight, about 117 million people will watch celebrities pitch cryptocurrency on the Super Bowl. In what’s being dubbed the “Crypto Bowl,” a batch of crypto exchanges including FTX, Coinbase, and Crypto.com, will air Super Bowl commercials at a cost of up to $7 million per 30-second spot. The game is even being held at a stadium named after SoFi, a company that offers crypto trading.\

BEWARE: https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/us/meet-the-crocodile-of-wall-street-rapper-accused-of-laundering-billions-of-dollars-in-crypto/ar-AATNmv6?li=BBnb7Kz

This isn’t the first time startups from an emerging industry have used the Super Bowl to introduce themselves to a mass audience. Does anyone remember the 2000 Super Bowl between the Rams and the Titans? That was known as the “Dot-Com Bowl.” Startups that were part of the dot-com wave of the early internet bought nearly 20% of the total ad slots in what is considered the peak of that tech bubble.

CITE: https://www.r2library.com/Resource/Title/082610254

Well, that bubble burst. In fact, according to journalist Neal Freyman, of the 14 dot-com companies that purchased Super Bowl ads that year, four are still active, five were acquired, and five (including Pets.com, OnMoney.com, and Epidemic.com) are either defunct or their status is unclear.

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ORACLE Buys CERNER Electronic Medical Records

By Staff Reporters

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Perks of Using EMR Systems on Locum Assignments | Medicus Healthcare  Solutions

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According to reporter Neal Freyman, Tech giant Oracle said it’s paying $28.3 billion to buy electronic medical records company Cerner, because anything that makes paperwork less excruciating seems like a savvy business play.

Oracle is known for being aggressive with acquisitions (it even rallied a group to try and buy TikTok last year), but Cerner is Oracle’s biggest purchase in its history. The deal is further evidence that health care is “on par with banking in terms of the importance to our future,” as cofounder Larry Ellison told analysts earlier this month.

  • In Cerner, Oracle will get the Klay Thompson of the electronic medical records market—a very influential player, but in second place behind Epic, which owns a 31% market share.

Bottom line: Big tech companies see a golden opportunity in bringing the health care industry to the cloud, given its size (health care spending accounts for almost 20% of US GDP), and its old-school record-keeping process. A Mayo Clinic study cited by Oracle showed that doctors and nurses spend an average of 1–2 hours on desk work for every hour they take to see patients.

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EMR PODCAST: https://medicalexecutivepost.com/2021/08/29/podcast-on-electronic-medical-records/

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Happy PALINDROMIC Wednesday

The “Numbers” Day

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DEFINITION: A palindrome is a word, number, phrase, or other sequence of characters which reads the same backward as forward, such as madam or racecar. There are also numeric palindromes, including date/time stamps using short digits 11/11/11 11:11 and long digits 02/02/2020.

CITE: https://www.r2library.com/Resource/Title/082610254

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List of Interesting Palindrome Words & Phrases You're Sure to Love! • 7ESL

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CRUNCH: According to mathematician Neal Freyman, today is the sound of mathematicians scrambling to find another topic to tweet about besides dates that form palindromes.

WHY: Today, 12/22/21, is the 22nd and final palindromic date of the year. There won’t be another year with 22 palindromic dates until 2111.

FACT: 1/20/21 was the first Inauguration Day with a palindromic date in American history. The next one will come in 1,000 years, on 1/20/3021.

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The NOBEL PRIZE IN ECONOMICS

By Neal Freyman

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Prizewinning Economists Show You Don’t Need a Lab
The three Nobel Prize winners in economics show that science is happening all around us—if we’re willing to look.

David Card, Joshua Angrist, and Guido Imbens, US-based economists who shared the prize awarded yesterday, helped pioneer the use of “natural experiments” to conduct studies on real-life situations as if they had happened in a tightly controlled lab.

Here’s one example: Card is most famous for his and Alan Krueger’s 1993 study on the effects of minimum wage on employment. They compared fast food jobs in New Jersey, which had just raised its minimum wage from $4.25 to $5.05, to fast food restaurants in neighboring Pennsylvania. The idea was that NJ and PA are generally pretty similar, so any observed differences in the labor market could lead to important conclusions about raising the minimum wage.

What did they find? That NJ’s higher minimum wage did not hurt job growth…and may have even increased employment. This shocked most experts at the time.

Bottom line: Natural experiments are now ubiquitous in economics research, but only because these Nobel Prize recipients showed what was possible. —NF

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