What is a Microsoft healthcare bot?

A chatbot is an artificial intelligence program that can simulate conversation with a user in natural language through messaging applications, websites, mobile applications or by phone.  One of the great advantages of chatbots is that, unlike applications, they are not downloaded. It is not necessary to update them, and they do not take up space in the phone’s memory.  Another advantage is that we can have several bots integrated into the same chat.

A chatbot is often described as one of the most advanced and promising expressions of interaction between humans and machines.  However, from a technology point of view, a chatbot only represents the natural evolution of a Question-Answering system leveraging Natural Language Processing.

One of the biggest issues the healthcare industry is facing today is how to ensure patients don’t feel as if they are merely a passenger on their treatment journey,  as well as feeling the ongoing effects of illness or injury.  Plus, those undergoing any treatment, patients can often feel uninformed and excluded from decisions that directly affect their health.  Microsoft is attempting to combat this feeling of exclusion by offering a unique healthcare bot service, which patients can use when seeking treatment and at other stages of their healthcare journey.

Microsoft Healthcare Bot

Microsoft’s Healthcare Bot is a SaaS solution, at its core, a Dialogflow-like bot design suite, tailor-made for health care scenarios. It allows developers to build conversational flows with symptom-checkers that tap built-in triage protocol databases and surface information about previous conditions.  Bots built with the Healthcare Bot service can handle appointment scheduling or look up doctors within driving distance.  The Health Bot Service empowers Microsoft partners to build and deploy compliant, AI-powered health agents, allowing them to offer their users intelligent, personalized access to health-related information and interactions through a natural conversation experience.

The Technology Behind MS Healthcare Bot:

The Healthcare Bot Service implements natural language understanding (NLP) and artificial intelligence (AI) technologies to understand the users’ intent and provide accurate information.  The service contains a built-in comprehensive medical database, including triage protocols.  The partner’s health bot instance can also be easily extended to include the partner’s own scenarios and integrate with many other IT systems and data sources.  Microsoft encrypts all data at rest and fully complies with the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA), the U.S. laws that provide data privacy and security provisions for safeguarding medical information.  They also conform to the EU’s GDPR and ISO 27001 and ISO 270018, the industry codes of practice that concern the handling of personal data protection in cloud environments.

Unique Aspects

The Healthcare Bot service has some unique aspects listed below:

  • Out-of-the-box healthcare intelligence including language models to understand healthcare intents and medical terminology, as well as content from credible providers with information about conditions, symptoms, doctors, medications, and even a symptom checker.
  • Customization and extensibility, which allows partners to introduce their own business flows, and securely connect to their own backend systems over HL7 FHIR or REST APIs.  The service model allows our partners to focus on important things like their key business needs and their own flows.
  • Security and compliance with industry standards, such as ISO 27001, ISO 27018, HIPAA, Cloud Security Alliance (CSA) Gold, and GDPR which we consider as table stakes in this industry.  Also, provides tools and out-of-the-box functionality that help our partners create secure and compliant solutions.


We will explore that common scenarios, channels, why healthcare industry should use the Microsoft Health Bot Service, and more in our next blog posts of these series.

in the meantime, let us know if you have any questions or if you’d like to connect with our specialists by filling out this form here.



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