America needs more healthcare workers. That's generally not a need that can be addressed quickly, but Amazon.com (NASDAQ:AMZN) has partnered with a nonprofit, Volunteer Surge, Inc., to " recruit, train, and deploy 1 million volunteer health workers," according to a press release.

Powered by Amazon Web services (AWS), the effort will train the volunteers while allowing existing doctors and nurses to focus on caring for patients.

 A group of healthcare workers are wearing masks.

America needs more healthcare workers. Image source: Getty Images.

How does it work?

Hospitals in areas hit hard by the coronavirus face unprecedented demand. Yet not all of the services needed require the medical skills of a doctor or a nurse.

The training program, created by Cinematic Health Education in consultation with the Yale School of Public Health, will put potential workers through 30 hours of online training. The newly trained workers will be able to help staff drive-through test sites, offer telephone support to homebound patients, and take vital signs in tent triage care centers.

"At AWS, we're committed to bringing the power of the cloud to help virtually train volunteer health workers as part of this important initiative," said Dave Levy, Vice President of U.S. Government and Nonprofits at AWS. "We're proud to support Volunteer Surge's critical work, which will provide relief for doctors and nurses who are working tirelessly to combat the COVID-19 virus."

Amazon helps fill a need

Many of these tasks are not difficult, but they require precision. Taking vital signs, for example, can have a major impact on how a hospital prioritizes people for treatment.

This is Amazon stepping up, meeting a need, and using AWS for the public good. It's going to save lives and that's something the retail giant deserves credit for.