St. Joseph’s/Candler in Savannah, Georgia, and its foodservice partner Morrison Healthcare, part of Compass Group USA, announced that Candler Hospital will be the first hospital in the U.S. to offer Amazon’s Just Walk Out technology. St. Joseph’s/Candler is also the first Just Walk Out technology-enabled store with employee badge pay, allowing employees to use their badge to make purchases.
“Amazon’s Just Walk Out technology supports our smart medicine strategy by providing high tech solutions to our patients, visitors and co-workers, even with food service,” Paul P. Hinchey, president and CEO of St. Joseph’s/Candler, said in the announcement. “With this technology, Candler Hospital co-workers needing a quick snack or a meal during the third shift, as well as visitors taking care of friends or family members, have a convenient way to purchase the meals, snacks, and drinks they need so they can quickly get back to their loved ones. Once we evaluate its impact post launch, we will determine how this technology might be utilized on our other campuses.”
Foodservice at Candler Hospital is undergoing an evolution, and Just Walk Out technology plays a critical role. In mid-2021, an existing hospital coffee shop was turned into a retail market – SmartBytes – to provide a 24/7 food option for Candler employees. The addition of Amazon’s Just Walk Out technology at SmartBytes creates a frictionless, cashless food market that’s accessible to both Candler employees and hospital visitors anytime.
“Over 70 years ago, Candler became our first hospital partner, which makes this an especially monumental moment for the team as Candler becomes the first ever hospital to incorporate Just Walk Out technology into its food experience,” Tim Pierce, CEO of Morrison Healthcare, said in the announcement. “This technology brings a forward-looking approach to hospital food access to better serve both caregivers and guests. As we continue to bring advanced digital options to our partners and create a frictionless environment for healthcare dining, Candler serves as an impressive model for how this can be achieved thoughtfully and strategically.”
Candler employees and visitors can now enter the Just Walk Out technology-enabled retail store by swiping a credit card or an employee badge – a new convenience for employees. They can then select from a wide range of food offerings, including prepackaged meals, snacks, and drinks. The technology detects which items are taken from or returned to shelves and creates a virtual shopping session. As they exit the store, the customer can leave without waiting in line, and their preferred payment – either a credit card or employee payroll deduct account – is charged for the items taken. This employee badge payment option is a first-of-its-kind offering for Just Walk Out technology.
Just Walk Out technology enables the SmartBytes market to stay open all day, every day, providing a much more robust food option than vending machines that many hospital employees and visitors have relied on in the past. The market is located near the emergency department, providing a nourishing, convenient food option to those waiting on loved ones.
“We’re excited to collaborate with St. Joseph’s/Candler Hospital and Morrison Healthcare to launch the first Just Walk Out technology-enabled dining establishment within a healthcare facility in the U.S.,” Jon Jenkins, vice president of Just Walk Out technology, added in the announcement. “This first-of-its-kind implementation enabling employee badge pay delivers a new level of convenience to hospital employees and visitors, enabling them to access refreshments and food day and night without waiting in line. We look forward to bringing Just Walk Out technology to more healthcare facilities across the U.S. and expanding employee badge pay to additional locations.”
Just Walk Out technology simplifies the shopping experience by eliminating checkout lines and helping consumers get in and out quickly and seamlessly. Just Walk Out technology is made possible by artificial intelligence like computer vision and deep learning techniques, including generative AI, to accurately determine who took what. Today, you can find Just Walk Out technology-enabled stores at more than 120 third-party locations from airports, stadiums, university campuses, grocery and convenience stores, theme parks, cafes, and more in the U.S., UK, Canada, and Australia.
Morrison Healthcare is part of Compass Group USA and a leading national food and nutrition services company, serving more than 950 hospitals and healthcare systems. Morrison Healthcare together with Crothall Healthcare form Compass One Healthcare – providing specialized patient experiences in food, nutrition and support services in more than 1,600 locations with a combined 90 years of healthcare experience.