Google says well being tasks will proceed—even when Google Well being will not

Google is unwinding its three-year-old Google Well being division because it reorganizes well being tasks and groups throughout the corporate.

Alphabet’s Google created the Google Well being division in 2018, shortly after saying Dr. David Feinberg, then CEO of Geisinger Well being, would be a part of the corporate as a vice chairman. Feinberg, who was tapped to change into CEO of Cerner this week, was charged with bringing Google’s well being efforts below a single umbrella.

On the heels of Feinberg’s departure, Google will dismantle Google Well being and distribute its tasks throughout different areas of the Mountain View, California-based firm, in line with an inside memo obtained by Insider. Well being-related groups will change into a part of the corporate’s analysis, search and machine divisions.

“Google deeply believes within the energy of expertise to enhance well being and wellness and we now have elevated our well being investments throughout the corporate,” a Google spokesperson wrote in an e-mail. “At this time, well being is a rising, company-wide effort and the Google Well being identify will proceed and embody our tasks that share the widespread objective to enhance world well being outcomes.”

The demise of Google Well being seems like “deja vu,” mentioned Paddy Padmanabhan, CEO of Damo Consulting.

Google’s first foray into healthcare—a private well being report service additionally known as Google Well being—shuttered in 2012 after 4 years.

“This isn’t uncommon,” mentioned Dr. Christopher Longhurst, chief data officer at UC San Diego Well being, noting different tech giants have pushed into healthcare, solely to stroll again their investments a couple of years later. “Healthcare is actually troublesome to disrupt.”

Longhurst in a tweet identified Google additionally shuttered its preliminary Google Well being undertaking after only a few years.

The unique Google Well being was much like Microsoft Corp.’s HealthVault, which operated from 2007 to 2019.

“I hope that we’ll see some continued funding within the healthcare house,” Longhurst mentioned of Google. “However I believe it could be harder with out a centralized healthcare supply.”

Google has been reorganizing since at the very least June, when the corporate began shifting Google Well being groups to Fitbit and search. Fitbit, which Google acquired in January, is a part of the corporate’s gadgets and companies enterprise. Google’s YouTube additionally unveiled its personal well being group earlier this yr.

Whereas Google Well being will not exist as a standalone entity inside Google, all the firm’s well being efforts will proceed, in line with a Google spokesperson. A lot of the groups inside Google Well being will stay the identical and can be located below Google’s analysis division. There can be no layoffs, the spokesperson mentioned.

Dr. Karen DeSalvo, Google’s chief well being officer who leads a group targeted on regulatory and compliance issues, will now report back to chief authorized officer Kent Walker. Google employed DeSalvo and different high-profile well being executives when it established Google Well being, together with former officers from HHS’ Workplace of the Nationwide Coordinator for Well being Data Expertise and the Meals and Drug Administration.

The Mayo Clinic of Rochester, Minnesota, will keep its cloud storage and innovation association with Google, a spokesperson for the well being system wrote in an e-mail. Over the previous two years, the Mayo Clinic established a medical information analytics platform on Google’s cloud platform and commenced a joint analysis undertaking to review whether or not synthetic intelligence can automate features of radiation remedy planning.

Google guardian Alphabet’s well being efforts spanned a number of areas, together with cloud offers with numerous well being programs and Onduo, a digital care firm targeted on power situations and housed inside Alphabet’s Verily life sciences arm.

Amazon and Microsoft are additionally making forays into the well being enterprise and have healthcare-specific arms inside their cloud divisions, however not for the corporate as an entire.

“These tech companies do not function in a vertically targeted method,” Padmanabhan mentioned. Putting well being groups inside different models that may tailor instruments and repair to the healthcare trade is preferable to consolidating healthcare actions right into a single division, he mentioned.

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