Amazon’s Alexa platform has revolutionized the way we approach technology. As one of the first widely-available voice assistants, Alexa introduced the average person to voice control of their home. Since that time, Alexa has branched out and become a beast of a service that can do everything from ordering a ride to shopping online.
One area where Alexa shines, however, is when you’re sick. With the holiday season upon us, flu and cold season isn’t far behind—and the last thing anyone wants to do when they’ve got the sniffles is venture out into the world for medicine.
The Alexa platform has a wide range of skills that you can use to your advantage when you’re down with a cold. The following are 6 of the best Alexa skills that can help when you’re sick.
Dr. AI Is An Alexa Skill That Can Diagnose You
No one likes to go to the doctor. Even if you aren’t sick when you get there, you probably will be when after spending an hour and a half in the waiting room. On the other hand, not going to the doctor is courting disaster. If you have a cold that has you feeling horrible, but not horrible enough to go to the doctor, give Dr. AI a try.
Dr. AI is an Alexa skill that’s ideal for when you’re feeling sick. It uses the expertise of over 107,000 doctors from 141 fields of medicine to diagnose you based on your age, gender, symptoms, and other factors. It is provided courtesy of HealthTap, a company that provides medical technologies.
Dr. AI is no substitute for an actual physician, so if your symptoms worsen you should visit the doctor—but it can be useful when you think you have nothing more than a nasty cold and need to know what sort of over-the-counter treatment to take.
Alexa Can Order Some Medicines For You
While Alexa can’t yet write prescriptions for you, she can order OTC medicines. Amazon sells quite a few common medications like Sudafed, Ibuprofen, and Tylenol.
If you have Amazon Prime and live in an area with Prime Now, you can have medicine delivered to you the same day. You can purchase it simply by telling Alexa what you would like to buy and then confirming by saying, “Buy it now.”
You will need to activate voice purchasing in your settings. It’s turned off by default to avoid accidental orders by children or because Alexa heard the wrong phrase from the TV.
Alexa Can Have Soup Delivered To You
Alexa is no stranger to delivery services. The main one used with Alexa is GrubHub. Oddly enough, neither DoorDash nor UberEats seem to be represented despite the presence of an Uber skill.
It’s easy to eat junk food when you feel ill, but it’s far better to give your body what It needs—quality, healthy food that will give you the energy you need to beat the cold and get back on your feet.
Even if GrubHub isn’t your speed, there are a lot of other delivery options from restaurants like Panera Bread. Your might even have smaller, more local restaurants with Alexa skills.
If it comes down to it, Alexa can also provide you with recipes on how to make your own soup at home. Instead of reaching for something unhealthy, order warm soup to soothe the savage cold.
Alexa Can Order a Rideshare To Take You To The Doctor
If you’re sick and taking cold medicine, you shouldn’t drive. If you’re sick and physically weak, you shouldn’t walk around. Instead, ask Alexa to order an Uber, Lyft, or your preferred rideshare service to take you to your local physician.
It’s the safest option in both cases. The Alexa skill is easy to activate. Once you’ve linked your Uber or Lyft account to Alexa, she can automatically hail a ride to wherever you want to go.
Alexa Can Tell You The Status Of Your Prescription & When It Ships
If you use a delivery prescription service, Express Scripts can tell you when your order is shipped and keep you up to date on the status of your order.
This skill is limited, however; you need to be a member with Express Scripts and use an eligible service, but for those that qualify the skill brings a huge number of benefits. Package theft is prevalent, and even more so when it comes to medicines. Express Scripts can help you make sure you’re around when the order arrives.
Alexa Can Keep You Entertained While You’re Sick
The only good aspect of being under the weather is the excuse to binge-watch your favorite shows without feeling guilty. Of course, losing the remote can spell disaster—unless you have Alexa set up and linked to your favorite streaming services, that is.
Alexa can play shows from Hulu, Amazon Prime Video, and many other services. All you have to do is ask her to stream it to a connected display, and voila: your favorite shows. Alexa won’t even mind if you cough while you ask.
The idea of your smart assistant evaluating your symptoms and providing a diagnosis seems a bit creepy (and to some people, far too invasive.)
However, Amazon has introduced a large number of medically-focused Alexa skills in order that users with certain disabilities might live an easier life. With cold and flu season on the way, think about how you might use your smart assistant to beat the germs and get back on your feet faster.