Pharmacies

Health care's love-hate relationship with Big Tech

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Health care companies are trying to fend off tech giants with one hand while striking up partnerships with them with the other.

Between the lines: Whether health care companies love or hate big tech's encroachment into their territory is dependent on whether they stand to make or lose money should the tech companies succeed.

The monopolization of patient drug data

Illustration of a prescription paper being digitized.
Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Few things are more valuable in health care than data — specifically prescription data. Surescripts, a company that allows prescriptions to be filled electronically, controls a lot of that data and has every incentive to keep it gated.

Driving the news: Surescripts is asking the FBI to investigate allegations that one of its vendors illegally shared patients' medication histories with Amazon's online pharmacy, PillPack. It's a fight that highlights how difficult it has become for patients to share their own drug data and how incumbent players protect their turf.