Need larger text?

-A A +A

Hill Country Memorial (HCM) Launches New Interactive COVID-19 Online Chat Tool

Fredericksburg, Texas - As a response to community members’ questions about COVID-19, HCM launched an online chat tool to provide an interactive platform to ensure all Hill Country residents have access to research based knowledge. HCM strives to collaborate with organizations, like IBM, to equip community members with the tools necessary to live a healthier life. 

The online chat tool, which is based on IBM Watson Assistant for Citizens, is housed on HCM’s website,, and is available for all community members.  The more it is used, the IBM Watson-based chat tool will increase in capacity, provide more accurate information and improve responsiveness with quick replies so residents can receive information about COVID-19 24/7. The online chat tool can easily assist community members looking for answers about COVID-19 symptoms, testing sites, as well as the status of schools, businesses, transportation and other public services. The online chat tool was developed with IBM utilizing IBM Watson Assistant for Citizens.

“As a rural health care system, it is important for us to continue exploring opportunities and tactics to help bridge the gap within our communities through digital access,” said Jayne Pope, CEO. “Now more than ever, we must be innovative to meet the needs of all community members. I want to thank IBM for their assistance in supporting HCM to be one of the first in the nation to use this cutting edge technology. This new approach will undoubtedly streamline our ability to serve and protect all members of the Texas Hill Country.”

“Healthcare institutions and governments are experiencing massive surges in citizen demand for services during this pandemic,” said Jason Kelley, Senior State Executive for IBM in Texas. “Our conversational AI platform is based on years of experience helping global businesses and is designed to help organizations like Hill Country Memorial better digitally engage to service their community now and in the future.” 

IBM Watson Assistant is a virtual agent that provides an engaging experience for users to get even their most complex questions and concerns resolved. Watson Assistant for Citizens is a virtual agent that supports both chat and speech interfaces, and is pre-loaded to understand and respond to common questions about COVID-19, based on the latest CDC information and other local sources.

In addition to the online chat, residents can continue to utilize the HCM Information Line Hotline at 830-990-6100.

For additional information about COVID-19 and to access the online chat tool, please visit: