Amazon has filed for a trademark for Amazon Pharmacy in several countries, according to a report by CNBC.
Those countries include Australia, Canada and the U.K. The trademarks illustrate how Amazon could potentially move its nascent online pharmacy business overseas, despite the numerous challenges it faces in the U.S.
Amazon filed for the patent in Canada on Jan 9. of this year, according to the Canadian Intellectual Property Office website. The trademark information shows that Amazon has given itself room to move into other medical areas, like dental instruments and surgical, medical or veterinary spaces.
Amazon started moving into the health space in earnest in 2017, when it was deciding whether or not to build a team to pursue the issue. A year later, the company bought online pharmacy PillPack, which specializes in delivering medicine to patients at home. The eCommerce company has also made moves to introduce prescription offerings in Japan.
Amazon Pharmacy is a new brand for the company. PillPack informed customers at the end of last year that it would start adding the brand to its packaging and printed collateral.
Currently, the company focuses on patients with chronic conditions as opposed to acute need medications, which means there is plenty of room for growth. PillPack could eventually move beyond simply shipping medications.
Amazon’s trademark actions could mean the company plans to expand its health initiatives globally, which aligns with its typical business model.
There have been issues with moving forward, as the healthcare industry is complicated and crowded with competitors. Together, patients and insurance companies spend about $300 billion per year on drugs.
Amazon’s purchase of PillPack has seen pushback from competitors, and the company has experienced problems with distributors and benefits managers alike.