Microsoft pinches medicine from Google surgery - Edward Jenner - Wikimedia Commons

Microsoft is telling the world how easy it is to transfer data from the Google Health service to its own HealthVault.

Essentially the two services are ways to monitor and access information about health online. Although Microsoft claims to have drummed up plenty of partnerships, including with the American Cancer Society etc., Google's service is shutting shop, bang on the 1st January 2012.

You will still be able to access records up until 2013.

Redmond says Google has been a highly valued partner in prodding customers to take that online leap of faith. This is PR-lese for "we have won this battle," but is it important to Google? 

You have to be a little more sensitive when you're dealing with sensitive information like patient records than you have to be with doling out app refunds. So Microsoft is highlighting that Google's service has an embedded feature which shoots all of your information to MSFT's HealthVault instead.

In a blog post, Google details why Microsoft's announcement may not be much to shout home about.

 "We're going to retire two products that didn't catch on the way we would have hoped," Google says, "but did serve as influential models."

If its goal, like it claims, was to draw people online for access to their healthcare - then scrapping the services may have reached that, to a point, already.

As Google closes surgery, Microsoft boasts other contract partners and third party organisations plan to make an appointment with Dr. Ballmer, too.