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Amazon Web Services commits $40 million to help advance health equity

By Ryan Morris-Reade, Wed 29 Sep 2021

AWS has announced a new global program to enhance health outcomes for underserved or under-represented communities.

Over the next three years, Amazon Web Services (AWS) is committing US$40 million in AWS credits and technical expertise to help organisations advance health equity. The program is open to all organisations worldwide wanting to leverage AWS to advance health equity in areas such as increasing access to health services for underserved communities, addressing social determinants of health, and leveraging data to promote more equitable and inclusive care systems. 

"Enabling healthcare equity in Australia and across Asia Pacific, Japan continues to be a priority for AWS," says AWS ANZ country director for the public sector, Iain Rouse.

"The pandemic has revealed many disparities in our society, and none more acute than in our healthcare systems. That's why AWS is proud to have announced the AWS Global Healthcare Equity Program. Our three-year, US$40 million commitment will enable organisations to harness the power of the cloud to help advance health equity globally. 

"We look forward to supporting our local healthcare customers and partners in Australia to continue to innovate and improve access to healthcare services," he says.

AWS Worldwide vice president of the public sector, Max Peterson, says, "At Amazon and AWS, we believe individual health outcomes shouldn't depend on socioeconomic status, race, ethnicity, or neighbourhood. 

"AWS is announcing a new global program to support organisations working to enhance health outcomes for underserved or under-represented communities. We're providing AWS credits and technical expertise, committing US$40 million over three years to help organisations develop solutions to improve health outcomes."

The program is open to organisations around the world that want to leverage AWS in any of the following areas: 

  • Increasing access to health services for underserved communities. 
  • Addressing social determinants of health.
  • Leveraging data to promote more equitable and inclusive systems of care. 

"Applying modern technology to health systems isn't a silver bullet to ending health inequity," says Peterson.

"But it can speed health research and innovation, level the playing field for accessing care, help deliver trusted information to people when and where they need it, streamline supply chains, and more.

"This new program gives organisations another way to access AWS credits and technical expertise to advance their missions. In early 2020, we established the AWS Diagnostic Development Initiative and have helped organisations worldwide apply the cloud's power to accelerate COVID-19 diagnostics research and development. 

"Through the initiative, AWS committed $20 million in computing credits and expertise to support customers using AWS to drive diagnostic innovations," he says.

So far, AWS has supported 87 organisations in 17 countries, ranging from non-profits and research institutions, to start-ups and large businesses. This year's deadline for applications is November 15, 2021. 
 

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