'We're not looking to compete with doctors': Microsoft exec on $20B Nuance acquisition 

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While Microsoft's $19.7 billion acquisition of speech recognition company Nuance Communications is poised to increase its healthcare footprint, the tech giant says it is not interested in automating everything physicians do, according to a May 25 CNBC report. 

"We're not looking to compete with doctors or healthcare providers," Scott Guthrie, Microsoft's executive vice president for cloud and artificial intelligence, told the network. "We want to make them more successful." 

In April, Microsoft announced the pending acquisition as a way to expand its healthcare offerings for its cloud products. Nuance has integrations with EHR vendors Epic and Cerner, among others, so the acquisition will help Microsoft break into the voice assistant's business selling software to hospitals and health systems, analysts and healthcare executives. 

Microsoft isn't immediately interested in certain human medical processes that can be automated, such as developing tools to ask patients questions that help with disease diagnosis and detecting cancer by analyzing medical images, according to the report. 

Microsoft said it views the acquisition as an opportunity to expand its total addressable market in healthcare to $500 billion. The deal is expected to close later this year, CNBC reported.

 

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